Restoration Shop Owner Indicted by Grand Jury

by Michael Satterfield

The owner of Wetherall Restoration in Longmont Colorado has been indicted by a grand jury on January 27th, 2020, on five counts of theft, as well as tax evasion and failure to file tax returns, according to a report from the Daily Camera. Police say Frederick Spencer Wetherall collected nearly $1 million dollars from customers who found him mostly via eBay, hoping to buy clones of the classic 1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL-1.

According to the indictment from the Colorado Attorney General's Office, Wetherall would advertise his services on eBay and have customers pay cash up-front and sign a contract outlining the specifications of their customized Camaro, but the contracts usually lacked an expected completion date. From 2013-2019 Weather collected almost $1 million dollars, without ever delivering a vehicle or refunding customers in full when they canceled their orders. Police say that Wetherall used photos of different Camaros to show customers' progress on their project car but would blame the delays on paint and bodywork being performed by another shop.

image via IMDB

Looking at his eBay history (username Bear123jetski), the account has some fairly mixed reviews, while it seems most customers were happy with their parts and car purchases, others have complaints ranging from undisclosed rusty frames to missing titles. But the feedback might be misleading as it appears that many customers would end up striking deals offline after finding Wetherall's listing on eBay. Some of those offline buying experiences have been shared on the consumer complaint site Ripoff Report.

The stories mirror what is in the indictment, one report from 2015 a buyer claims that he found Wetherall on eBay and arranged to purchase a ZL1 Camaro clone, they agreed on a price and a 10-month timeline only to have the process drag on four years. This customer eventually did get their car, but the user goes on to claim that once it arrived the car had a litany of issues including a leaking water pump, poor craftsmanship, and mismatched parts.

image via IMDB

Another story from a buyer in Louisiana describes an eBay auction where Wetherall reached out before the auction closed to strike a deal but "the transaction would have to be offline from e-bay and my bank would need to send his bank, a wire transfer." From there the buyer claims that the car was not numbers matching as advertised, that Wetherall didn't have a title as promised, and the car had undisclosed damage. The complaints on Ripoff Report stretch back to 2012 and all described similar stories. The buyer in Louisiana's story was also posted to the website Scamion, followed by a number of complaints of the same nature ranging from 2015-2019. In this thread, it appears that Wetherall decided to defend himself in a reply that doxes the customer by publishing his home address after encouraging people to look at the car themselves.

A self-published post on from August 2019, Wetherall describes himself: "Spencer Wetherall is an award winning classic car restoration specialist. In fact, he is the only classic Camaro ZL-1 expert in the world. In addition to running his business, Wetherall Restorations, He also own, write, and direct Time Machine Camaros, a TV show about classic car restoration" and that " he has rebuilt over a hundred custom cars for clients from all around the world." The same text can be found on his site.

Wetherall was released on a $15,000 bond and is set to appear in court on February 3rd, 2020.