The Van Buren County Sheriff’s department took a report Tuesday, May 2, about a fraud perpetrated on a county resident for $1,600.


Per the department’s statement, the man had contracted with a “traveling paving company” to have some work done at his home. It began when a man came onto the reporting man’s property driving a truck with a flashing light. He said he was a paving contractor, had just finished a paving job down the road for the highway department and was willing to sell some leftover blacktop he had for $10 a yard.


The man making the offer said his name was W.J. Boswell, representing a company named Road Builders. The man making the report told deputies he agreed to the man’s terms, and the man came back with a crew, including a dump truck and other equipment “that all looked brand new,” the report stated. The crew laid down the blacktop and told the man the price was $7,000.


He thought this price was high, the man making the report told deputies, but he also told officers he hadn’t measured the area. “Boswell,” in return, told the man “he could do the whole area” for $16,000, “but would need a check right now so he could go to Leslie and put it in the bank,” the report stated.


The man reporting gave “Boswell” a check for $16,000. Boswell left, leaving his crew behind, purportedly to put the check in his bank. After some wait the crew left, and the man tried to call “Boswell” using the phone numbers on a business card he was given, but to no avail.


He found out later via online search, he told the sheriff, that someone by the name “Boswell” was wanted in Indiana by its state police for the same sort of fraud.