Dozens of businesses across the Coachella Valley claim Theresa Darrah scammed them out of thousands of dollars in a tabletop advertising scheme.
Darrah was taken into custody Tuesday evening on dozens of charges, including burglary and possession of stolen property.
“I’m not the only one, but I’m sure there’s a lot of us in the desert that are really happy to see Theresa Darrah is in jail and hopefully staying there for a while,” says Steve Kowalsky, owner of ‘PS I Love Your Haircut’ in Cathedral City. Kowalsky claims Darrah took $2200 from him for advertising that she did not deliver on.
“I wrote a check and she committed fraud by post dating the check sooner than it was supposed to be cashed and she cashed it the same day when I told her not to cash it for a month,” says Kowalsky.
Some business owners who paid for advertising claim Darrah blatantly lied to them.
“She’s taking people’s money and not delivering. She’s lying to people. She told me I was going to be the only realtor on the table top and there were ten other realtors on the table top,” says Richard Martin, who works as a realtor.
“She had told me the same thing, I was going to be the only realtor and it would be in 25 locations across the Coachella Valley and that didn’t happen,” says Judy Glenn, who is a realtor with Home Smart Professionals.
“We’ve waited for criminal charges, because she scammed so many people in the Valley and in the mountain area, she’s doing it in a lot of places,” says Amanda Walker-Bradshaw, former operations manager with CV Auto Works. “There’s thousands of people in my assumption. I’ve talked to myself at least a hundred,” says Walker-Bradshaw.
Even after the arrest, many of the business owners we talked to said they don’t think they are going to be able to get their money back.
“I pretty much resolved that I’m not going to get the money back, it was an expensive lesson to learn,” says Martin.
“We were going to file small claims on her and he said forget it, there are over 30 small claims against her and nobody has been able to collect their money.”
Theresa Darrah had started using different names in the past few months. She’s been known to go by Reese Stacy and Theresa Stacy.
She most recently sold advertisements using the name Reese Stacey for a publication called “Desert Cities Modern Woman.”
“It was so nice to see justice was finally being served. I’ve waited a lot of years to see her go to jail and I’m so grateful that she’s there. And it seems to be over at this point, like her game is up, it’s done,” says Walker-Bradshaw.
Darrah is being held on $1 million bail.