A pool contractor is in trouble after Polk County deputies say he ripped off a number of families -- to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

  • John Lee Johnson charged with grand theft, scheme to defraud
  • Victims say he started projects but didn't finish them
  • Sheriff says call detectives if you think you've been victimized

Victims say Tropic Pools of Central Florida owner John Lee Johnson took their money and never finished the work.

At least two of the victims were battling cancer and wanted the pools installed for therapy, according to the Sheriff's Office.

One woman died before the pool was ever finished.

"It was pretty much excuse after excuse," said Ruth Kimmons. "He would come at first and then we got a shell in the ground and he pretty much never came back. And we just got excuses from him and once that started happening I thought to myself, 'I can't be the first person he's done this to.'"

Sheriff Grady Judd asks others who think they've been victimized by the company to contact detectives.

Johnson is charged with grand theft, scheme to defraud, and misappropriation of construction funds.