Central IA man to be tried for scamming Harlan family


July 7th, 2011 by Ric Hanson

A West Des Moines man has entered a written plea of not guilty, to a felony 1st degree theft charge, in connection with an incident reported in Shelby County. According to Sheriff’s officials and on-line court records, 57-year old Jon Peter DePhillips is accused of asking a Harlan customer of D-C Associates in West Des Moines, to write a personal check to him in the amount of $11,500, for payment of windows he sold a few months after he was dismissed from the company for alleged misconduct related to fraud.

The complaint against DePhillips dates back to October, 2009, when he contacted a Harlan homeowner about having their windows replaced, and made financial arrangements for them to pay for the windows. DePhillips would later allegedly tell the homeowner D-C Associates was no longer in business, that he was the CEO of a new company in Clive that had taken over as creditor. He told the homeowner they could write him a check for amount still owed. The resident’s check was immediately cashed by DePhillips.

A Sheriff’s investigation however, revealed D-C Associates, was still in business, and has been for more than four decades. The company says DePhillips was fired after an internal investigation indicated he had interfered with the sale of $30,000 by another company salesperson.

The scam involving the Harlan resident came unraveled, after the homeowner questioned why they were receiving statements from a creditor who had financed the purchase said their account was delinquent. The creditor, G.E. Money, was notified of the ongoing criminal investigation, and DePhillips was arrested by West Des Moines Police. At the time of his arrest, he was also allegedly in possession of a stolen vehicle.

DePhillips is set to be arraigned on the theft charge July 18th. His trial was set for August 30th.