City contractor accused of theft
Gindlesperger-Pender faces charges after police investigation
An Altoona contractor faces charges after police allege he took tens of thousands of dollars in down payments for jobs he never completed.
Jeffrey W. Gindlesperger-Pender, 36, of Altoona was arraigned Thursday on felony charges that include theft by deception, receiving stolen property and home improvement fraud after state police and Hollidaysburg Borough police investigations allegedly found Gindlesperger-Pender took $25,500 from a Frankstown Township couple and $12,500 from a Hollidaysburg couple for construction projects that he either never started or failed to complete.
According to charges filed jointly by Hollidaysburg police and state police, Gindlesperger-Pender was under contract to build a $35,000 enclosed porch for a client in Frankstown and after cashing a $25,500 check as down payment in July 2017, no work was ever started and no money was ever returned.
That same year, Gindlesperger -Pender allegedly cashed a $12,500 deposit check from a customer in Hollidaysburg for a roof replacement job. That job was to cost a total of $16,500, and although building materials were delivered to the site and some work was done, the roof was left unfinished and materials that had been at the site for the job ultimately disappeared, according to police.
Police said Gindlesperger-Pender gave a list of excuses as to why the jobs were not started or completed, including that he had other jobs to finish, he had to fire employees because they were stealing from him, he had bid on multiple jobs at the same time and he was unable to get a waste container delivered to the job site.
State police said the incomplete roof project caused water damage to the building and the missing shingles had actually been taken from the job site by Gindlesperger-Pender’s girlfriend.
Police said Gindlesperger -Pender had claimed those shingles were ordered as part of another job at another location but a follow-up investigation showed Gindlesperger-Pender hadn’t been contracted to work on the other building until months after the theft of the shingles from the incomplete roofing job.
Gindlesperger-Pender was freed on an unsecured $75,000 bond. A preliminary hearing on the six felony counts that Gindlesperger-Pender is charged with is slated for March 26 before Magisterial District Judge Paula Aigner.