The Iowa woman who took vendors' money for holiday shows in five states, but never held the event may soon be facing charges in Wisconsin.
KELOLAND News has been following this story since last December.
A lot of small businesses earn the bulk of their money over the holiday season. Many of them count on customers at vendor and craft fairs that take place at various locations from October through December.
Terry Hardy's company, Street Repeats, allegedly took thousands of dollars from area vendors for a holiday market at the Sioux Falls Convention Center. But Hardy had never finished paying for a summer show and never paid for the one she booked for November, so it was cancelled.
Hardy and her husband Don Hatland also allegedly took money from more than 100 vendors in Wisconsin, violated her contract with the facility there, cancelled the show, but kept the money.
Now the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection is recommending that criminal charges be filed against Hardy and Hatland for allegedly scamming dozens of local vendors.
Those investigators turned the case over to the Dane County District Attorney's office.
KELOLAND’s Angela Kennecke spoke the attorney handling the case, who told her he's evaluating it and will determine whether or not charges will be filed against the couple.
Teri Hardy told people, who worked for multi-level marketing companies, that she was planning vendor shows in five different states, including South Dakota and Iowa. She took their money, but never delivered on the events and kept all the cash. Now Hardy and her husband Don Hatland have declared bankruptcy.
KELOLAND Investigates was in Sioux City last month when vendors from across the Midwest confronted Hardy and Hatland about the money they lost when their company cancelled the shows. Hardy and Hatland were in federal court for a bankruptcy hearing. They listed 361 creditors, saying they owed more than $203,000. But they weren't answering any questions on that day.
We have an update on a KELOLAND News investigation into a holiday market show promoter who took thousands of dollars from vendors who signed up and then cancelled shows all over the Midwest, including here in Sioux Falls. Then she refused to give any refunds.
The South Dakota Attorney General's Office of Consumer Protection has had at least 16 complaints about Hardy and her company, but so far has taken no action.
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