Man allegedly took women's money, didn't deliver headstones

Headstones still not delivered after Ricky Williams promises to have them by May

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Vernell Roker said when her daughter, Vicki, died in 2013, she decided to go with a family friend when it came to ordering her daughter's marker.

"I knew Ricky from a little boy," Roker said.

She said her daughter and Ricky Williams grew up together, living in the same neighborhood, so when her daughter died, and she learned he was in the business of selling headstones, Roker said she thought, "I am giving Ricky a chance, because I know he's starting out and, you know, he does that kind of work."

She gave Community Monument & Casket Company a $600 deposit toward a headstone.

Roker then referred Ricky Williams to her best friend, Betty Williams, who said she gave Ricky Williams a check of more than $1,150 toward a headstone for her granddaughter, Kia.

Months turned into years. At one point, Roker said she even visited with Ricky Williams' mother to try to get answers.

When Williams didn't provide the marker or a refund, Roker decided to "Call Christina."

"I just don't understand," Roker said. "How can he do me like that? He got my money. He put no headstone on my baby's grave."

"Unless he's a real con artist, I believe he was taking money, doing the next job and the next job, and just ran out of money," Betty Williams said.

When Local 10 News approached a man neighbors identified as Ricky Williams, he denied that's who he was, but both Roker and Betty Williams identified him from video as the man who took their money and never delivered the marker.

Later, Ricky Williams called Local 10 News consumer advocate Christina Vazquez and said he wouldn't be able to give them their money back, but he made an assurance that he would deliver the headstones by May.

Now, into July, both women said they haven't heard from him.

"I hope you can make it right where he don't do that to anybody else," Betty Williams said.

Roker said she often has a difficult time finding her daughter's burial site. She lumbers through the grass searching for her.

"I want my baby to have a stone, a headstone on her grave, not just thrown it out here like she's forgotten," Roker said. "She need a headstone on her grave."

Because they are on a fixed income, both women said it is difficult for them to save enough money to hire someone else to order new headstones.

Follow Christina Vazquez on Twitter @CallChristinaTV

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