Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Gazette Premium Content Hearing Thursday could shut down auto shop

MATT STEINER Updated: November 27, 2012 at 12:00 am

A court hearing Thursday is expected to determine whether a 56-year-old Colorado Springs auto shop owner will stay in business.

The Colorado Attorney General’s Office filed a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against Springs Transmission and Automotive, accusing owner Greg Ehnes and manager Jessica White of deceiving, misleading and financially injuring consumers, according to a complaint filed Nov. 15.

The hearing comes nearly two months after Colorado Springs police arrested Ehnes on suspicion of 25 counts of theft and 11 counts of criminal mischief.

He allegedly sold customers’ cars for scrap without their permission, forged titles, falsely advertised the status of the company and didn’t give customers services that had been promised.

White took over ownership responsibilities after Ehnes’ arrest, the complaint said.

If the 4th Judicial District Court makes the restraining order and injunction permanent Thursday, the orders would forbid Ehnes, White or “any other persons in concert” with them from conducting any automotive repair or towing.

According to the complaint, claims against Ehnes and his shop at 3310 Chelton Loop North in central Colorado Springs began in 2008 and “the series of false, misleading, and deceptive acts and practices are continuing in nature.”

One complaint led to the September arrest by Fountain polie of Ehnes and at least one employee on suspicion of conspiracy. Ehnes and the employee allegedly tried to cover up damage to a client’s car after claiming the vehicle had been stolen.

The arrest warrant that led to Ehnes’ October arrest outlined several cases in which officers said he stole from customers. Since the arrests, at least 15 other customers came forward and filed similar complaints.

Thursday’s hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. at the El Paso County Courthouse on Tejon Street in downtown Colorado Springs.

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