CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The troubleshooters have reported stories dating back to 2011 about a local appliance repairman named Augustine Balboa III.
He runs a business called Triple A Restaurant Service.
His customers tell us he persuades them to give him money for parts with the promise of a refund since the device is under warranty.
But the customers who call us claim they never get their refund. On Wednesday, another customer tells the troubleshooters his story.
Jo Ann Williams says her encounter with Augustine Balboa III took place around Christmas 2021.
Balboa had stopped by the hotel where she works and offered his services.
She remembers asking him to come and see her at home.
She says he measured the space in her garage to make sure a refrigerator that was in her son’s house would fit in the space in her garage.
Williams says Balboa actually picked it up and brought it to her house and started cleaning it up.
“And then he says to me, ‘Mrs. Williams?’ I’m like, ‘yeah?’ ‘We have a problem,'” she said. “I’m like, ‘Well, what’s the problem?’ He says, “You need a circuit board.” I said, “A circuit board?” I was like, uh AB, I don’t want to spend any more money.”
Williams showed us the bill he said he gave her. She also remembers something else he told her about needing $970 up front.
It’s a similar story others have shared with us.
“You have to pay him in advance. He said because of the scam that is going on you have to pay us in advance. After we get the role, we’ll refund your money,” she said.
Williams says she paid him the money.
There was also the matter of $613 for a control panel, which Williams recalled when Balboa told her she needed it too. “No way,” Williams claims she told him.
And that’s the last communication Williams claims to have had with Balboa.
“Called every day. Every day. Then I waited a week. Called and I called,” Williams said.
“He still hasn’t called you back?” we asked.
“Didn’t call me back,” she told the troubleshooters.
As always, the troubleshooters have attempted to contact Balboa to give him the opportunity to tell us his side of these stories. He didn’t return our calls.
We asked the prosecutor.
They point out that the 105th Circuit Court has two charges pending against Balboa for elder exploitation and theft.
The court tells us that no hearing dates have been set. The DA’s office goes on to tell us that there are “other” possible cases against Balboa that they are investigating.
Williams went online and found our stories about Balboa, dating back to 2011.
“I’ve been on Facebook and I’ve been watching local news, and I’ve been reading about the lady, and I’m like, ‘Oh my god,’ this is the same man. Then I read that he’s been doing this since 2011? 2011, and you just took people’s money and there’s nothing you can do? That’s ridiculous.”
We tried calling Balboa again today but he didn’t call back.