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Husband, wife sentenced for bilking 50 Coloradans in tree trimming scam

Husband, wife sentenced for bilking 50 people in tree trimming scam
Husband, wife sentenced for bilking 50 people in tree trimming scam 00:22

A husband and wife were recently sentenced after skipping out on landscaping work they agreed to complete for 50 residents in six Colorado counties. 

Most recently, fifty-year-old Joseph Tyler was ordered to spend eight years in the Colorado Department of Corrections and repay $23,000 to the customers he defrauded. Tyler, indicted by a grand jury a year ago, pleaded guilty to two felony counts of theft; 49 other counts were dropped by prosecutors.

Joseph Tyler following his arrest in 2022. Arvada Police Department

His wife, 38-year-old Amelia Tyler, pleaded guilty in January to felony theft and is currently serving a three-year probation term, at an intensive rehabilitation program.

Amelia Tyler following her arrest in 2022. Arvada Police Department

Most of the couples' victims were over the age of 80 at the time, according to a press release from the Colorado Attorney General's Office, which stepped in to prosecute the Tylers due to the multiple jurisdictions in which the crimes occurred. 

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"According to the grand jury indictment, the husband-wife team would show up at a residence to solicit tree-trimming or home-repair services for a set amount of money," as stated in the press release. "Sometimes the homeowner paid in cash, but more often, they paid by check. The wife would then cash the check at the homeowner's bank while the husband cut a few branches at the victim's home. After cashing the check, the wife would return to pick up the husband before he completed most of the job. The defendants would then tell the homeowner that they needed to get something and would be back, but they rarely returned to the jobsite."

The couple operated the scam starting in February 2020 until they were arrested in October 2022. 

Their cases were prosecuted in a Jefferson County court. 

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