Blountville roofer accused of contractor fraud against Hawkins church

Jeff Bobo • Feb 2, 2019 at 6:00 PM

KINGSPORT — A Blountville roofer who allegedly took $3,100 from a Hawkins County church in 2017 and then didn’t do the work or deliver the materials was arrested Tuesday on charges of contractor fraud and theft over $1,000.

On Dec. 11, 2017, a trustee from the Mt. Zion Church in the Kingsport portion of the county reportedly gave a check for $3,100 to Ronald Clifford Penland Jr., 40, 109 Cold Springs Road, Blountville.

Those funds were to cover the cost of materials to replace the roof on the church at 3825 W. Virginia Ave.

This past August, the trustee reported to the Kingsport Police Department that Penland had not returned to perform the work, nor had he delivered any of the materials.

KPD Officer Greg Lane stated in his report that the trustee had unsuccessfully attempted several times to contact Penland by phone.

When Lane attempted to call Penland, he received a message stating that the phone wasn’t accepting calls.

The trustee was advised to send Penland a certified letter demanding return of the money and to send that same letter to the Consumer Protection Division of the Tennessee Attorney General’s Office.

An arrest warrant for Penland was issued Nov. 1, and he was arrested Tuesday by the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office.

He was arraigned Wednesday in Hawkins County Sessions Court and released on $1,000 bond. His next court appearance was scheduled for May 7.