CLEARFIELD – A Philipsburg man accused of failing to complete contracted home improvements waived his right to a preliminary hearing Wednesday during Centralized Court at the Clearfield County Jail.
Brian T. Barton, 45, of Philipsburg has been charged with theft by unlawful taking; theft by deception; theft by failure to make the required disposition of funds; false statement to induce agreement for home improvement services; receives advance payment for services and fails to perform; and misrepresents or conceals contractor identifying information.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, the victim contacted Decatur Township police about the alleged theft of services that occurred at her Osceola Mills home. She told police she entered into a home improvement contract with Barton, the owner and operator of Barton Contracting, on Sept. 8 2013 and with work to be completed by May of 2014 for a total cost of $90,000.
The home improvement contract failed to list a contractor’s license number. Upon agreeing to the contract, the victim issued a check for $30,000 to Barton. On Nov. 22, 2013, the victim issued a second check to him for $30,000. On March 7, 2014, the victim issued a third check to him for $10,000. Barton cashed all three checks, which totaled $70,000; however, he neither completed the work nor returned the money, the affidavit alleges.
On Dec. 22, 2014, police requested Barton to come into the station. During an interview, he told police he underbid the job and ran out of money to complete it. He admitted that he neither intended on completing the job nor returning money to the victim. Additionally, Barton said he was waiting for the victim to sue him civilly to file for bankruptcy.
The victim had work done to her home to prevent further damage and paid a second contractor $10,000 for siding installation. She also provided police a written estimate, which showed a cost of $58,750, to have home improvement work completed as agreed upon in the contract, according to the affidavit.
Barton’s bail is currently set at $50,000 unsecured.