ROWLETT, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Moments after Gregg Averitt entered an Oklahoma City courthouse, five North Texas families who’d once counted on him to rebuild their homes and businesses watched U.S. Deputy Marshals place him in handcuffs.
“It was nice seeing him get arrested,” said Aaron Limerick over the phone from Oklahoma.
“It was glorious!” chimed his wife, Carrie Limerick.
In February, the Limericks showed CBS11 their Rowlett home destroyed by the tornado more than two years ago and then abandoned by Averitt, who they’d hired to fix it.
“He’s a monster. He’s a monster,” Aaron said, at the time.
A bankruptcy filing last month shows the Limericks paid him more than $148,000.
It also names 15 other North Texas he owes money and claims a total of nearly one and a half million dollars in debt.
“I just can’t believe he thought he was going to get away with filing bankruptcy, like all this money he stole was just going to vanish,” said Carrie.
Amy Carpenter says Averitt still owes her $8,000, but she hasn’t heard from him in more than a year.
“Nobody can find Gregg,” she said.
Suddenly, she and his other former customers knew where to find him.
“We all get this letter from bankruptcy court. We’re all bound and determined that some of us be there. Because now with these warrants, he can be arrested,” said Carpenter.
Two weeks ago, Sachse Police filed criminal charges against Averitt for felony theft and forgery on behalf of two victims – Sharon Pollock and Luis Sanchez.
Pollock paid Averitt more than $85,000 to repair a hail damaged roof on commercial property in downtown Wylie she’d inherited from her mother, but police found no sign of he’d done any work.
Sanchez, meanwhile, reported Averitt forged a Bank of America endorsement signature on a check to collect almost $15,000 for work never completed.
The victims, who’ve worked together trying to track Averitt’s movements, called the Collin County Sheriff’s Office, urging them to take advantage of Averitt’s bankruptcy hearing to make an arrest.
They didn’t know if their efforts would pay off, but five familes made the drive to Oklahoma City Tuesday hoping to at least confront Averitt and tell their story to the U.S Trustee assigned to his bankruptcy case.
The trip paid off, as they witnessed the arrest they’d had hoped for.
“I was shaking. I was so infuriated and happy at the same time,” said Carrie. “He’s finally been stopped.”
Averitt is now in the Oklahoma County Jail awaiting extradition to Collin County. His former customers plan to push for more charges to be filed.
CBS11 reached out to the defense attorney representing Averitt, but has not received a response.