Baffling builder racks up charges, lands in jail

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From the Hall of Shame - to the hall of justice.

"The people versus James Michael Ciarmataro...."

This is "big time" builder James Ciarmataro being arraigned for several new felony charges.

Judge: "Are you presently employed?"

James Ciarmataro: "Yes I own my own company."

Judge: "And what is the name of it please?"

"Maddox Construction."

Maddox Construction is a company well-known for its selfie-loving owner and for being an unlicensed builder with a bunch of angry customers.

Rob Wolchek did a Hall of Shame story on him in January: Complaints build against baffling builder

James, who never got a contractor's license - despite saying he did - had been running his company for only about a year. In that time he racked up a bunch of customers who told me he'd taken their money and never did the work.
And on the jobs he did work, he stiffed his sub-contractors. And James had already racked up civil judgements and a couple of felony charges by the time we met - like being charged with felony identity theft in Oakland County.

When we caught up with him, we asked about it:

Wolchek: "What's up with that?"

"I'm a victim of identity theft," James said.

Wolchek: "You're not a victim here, you're the defendant."

"No, I am the defendant," he said.

James had a bunch of weird things to say when I put him in the Hall of Shame. I had a feeling I would be seeing him again.

It sure was nice catching up with James Ciarmataro. In fact, I got to see him twice, in two different courtrooms.
That means James has four felony cases in front of four different judges in two counties.

Friday morning in in Romeo District Court, James was charged with two counts of felony larceny by conversion.  

And Friday afternoon in Shelby Township court he was charged with another count of larceny by conversion and a misdemeanor count of being an unlicensed builder.

Add to that his identity theft case and his credit card fraud case and James is racking up the charges.

In both of his new cases, the judges noticed the one-man alleged crime wave aspect of James before setting bond.

"There is just way too much going on here," a judge said. "I'm going to set bond at 20 thousand dollars’ cash or surety only."

That's in Shelby court.  In Romeo James pleaded for a light bond.

"I've never missed a court date ever ..."

But the judge cut him off.

"This has nothing to do with missing court dates," he said. "Protection of society is another viable consideration when setting bond."

That bond was set at $30,000. So unless James can come up with $50,000, he'll be in Macomb County Jail for a while.