By Dillon Thomas
DENVER (CBS4) – Dozens of Coloradans scrambled to find replacement movers after the company they hired were evicted, and closed.
The Public Utilities Commission revoked Special Ops Moving and Storage’s business permit, and the landlord for the company’s storage seized the property. Customers were asked to claim their items from the northwest Denver storage location, as the landlord evicted Special Ops.
Pallets of belongings were fork-lifted out of the property, most of which were returned to the original owners. One customer hired a different moving company to relocate his items for safekeeping.
“I just walked through the warehouse, and it is broken items,” said Lana Barrett, a customer of Special Ops.
Barrett told CBS4’s Dillon Thomas she hired the company to help her move in the beginning of 2017. She selected the company after reading reviews online and hearing they preferred to hire veterans.
Barrett claimed the company showed up late for her move, and overcharged her for the work the completed. She also accused the company of falsifying their claims of employment of mostly veterans.
“I kind of thought that military meant they were a little more honorable,” Barrett said.
After Barrett refused to pay the amount the company charged, she claimed the company went on to hold her items hostage for more than a year.
“They (knew) that they had you over a barrel, and there was nothing you can do,” Barrett said.
Barrett sued the company, and was also counter-sued. She won her lawsuit, and some of her items were returned. However, she said most of her valuable items were never given back, including jewelry.
“I got somebody else’s bed. I got broken items,” Barrett said. “There was over $72,000 worth of stolen and damaged items. I think it has been sold. It is gone.”
Another customer told CBS4 his items were held by the company for several months, even when he asked for them to be released.
The company was given an “F” rating by the Better Business Bureau in Denver. A company under the same name, in Texas, currently has a “D-“ rating.
Barrett said she hoped the company, and its operators, would not try to return to the moving and storage business in Colorado, or anywhere else.
“It feels pretty good to know that they aren’t going to do this to someone else. It is done, it is over,” Barrett said.
Those who still have items left in the former Special Ops Moving and Storage facility are asked to call Kim Bruetsch at (303) 397-3600. Bruetsch represents the building’s landlord, who is holding on to items for the time being.
Dillon Thomas is a reporter at CBS4 and a Colorado native. He believes everyone has a story, and would love to share yours! You can find more of his stories by following him on Twitter, @DillonMThomas.