Husband and wife log home builders are now in custody after bilking residents in six counties of millions of dollars and fleeing the area.
Detective Van Williams of the McDowell County Sheriff’s Office charged 50-year-old Del Jon Bristol Jr. and 46-year-old Serena Stamm Bristol, address listed as Pepperwood Drive in Marion, each with one count of embezzlement and five counts of exploiting the elderly. Additional charges are forthcoming. The Bristols are in the McDowell County jail under $700,000 bonds.
The couple is the owners of World Outdoor Log Homes, which they operated out of their residence on Pepperwood Drive.
Over the past couple of months, reports have been pouring in from victims in McDowell, Rutherford, Buncombe, Polk, Madison and Henderson counties that had contracted with the Bristols to build them homes.
The couple took hundreds of thousands of dollars at a time from most of the victims — either from them personally or from their construction loans – for down payments, purchasing of materials and paying subcontractors, but the money was not used for that and is still unaccounted for.
As of now, there are at least 20 victims across the six counties who were scammed for well over $2 million.
Earlier this month, the Bristols abruptly left town. Investigators with the McDowell County Sheriff’s Office tracked the two to a condo on Lake Norman on Thursday, Jan. 10 and apprehended them there.
The investigation continues.