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Unlicensed contractor makes unexpected court appearance

Jeffrey Miller pleads not guilty to charges in Broward County

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – It was like getting a visit from the ghost of contractors past. Last month, Broward County prosecutors charged Jeffrey Miller with possession of oxycodone, grand theft and contracting without a license.  

He appeared in Broward County court Monday morning for his arraignment -- an appearance the judge did not expect.

That's because Miller's attorney entered a written plea of not guilty on his client's behalf.

"He sat at my dining room table, nice guy, totally polished," Ava Murphy said. "He took me, line and sinker."

Murphy said she paid Miller almost $1,000 in August to install hurricane shutters on her Deerfield Beach home.

"He constantly had excuses," she said. "Excuse, after excuse, after excuse."

After seeing Local 10's "Leave it to Layron" team investigations about Miller, Murphy said she contacted the Broward County Sheriff's Office, picked Miller out of a lineup and pressed charges.  

She wasn't the only one. 

"He needs to do right, basically," another victim, Abdon Williams, said. "I don't know how he's going to do that because there are so [many] people involved."

Williams was the first Miller customer to contact the LITL team after hiring Miller to install shutters on his home. He paid Miller $1,840 as a deposit for the shutters, which have yet to be installed.

Williams and Murphy sat together in court Monday morning.

Because Miller's attorney entered a written plea, the judge was surprised to learn Miller had shown up.

Miller stepped out of the courtroom to contact his attorney and never re-entered.

His alleged victims are optimistic the courts will hold him accountable.

"He did what he did, and he's going to have to pay the consequences," Williams said.

"I really hope more people come forward," Murphy said.


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