W.Va. AG Files Lawsuit Against Steubenville DJ/Wedding Planner | News, Sports, Jobs
West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has filed a lawsuit against a Steubenville DJ/wedding planner for allegedly failing to provide advertised services to numerous clients.
Helen Marie Nichole Smith conducted business in West Virginia under the names H&K
DJ Services and H&K DJ and Event Services, LLC. She allegedly violated the state’s Credit and Consumer Protection Act, and the attorney general is asking the court to prohibit the woman “from engaging in any unfair or deceptive acts or practices in connection with the sale of services disc jockey and wedding planning…”
“It’s very simple: you have to obey the law if you want to do business in West Virginia and be honest about your job,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “Those who defraud consumers must be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”
The state began investigating Smith after receiving several consumer complaints from West Virginia. Smith owned and operated the business, first in West Virginia and later in Ohio, from April 2020 to May 2021. She advertised on social media and the internet.
Morrisey alleged Smith failed to register his business with the West Virginia Division of Taxation or the West Virginia Office of the Secretary of State.
Court documents said Smith entered into more than 135 contracts to provide disc jockey services for upcoming weddings in West Virginia and other states. At least 34 West Virginia consumers contracted her business, but she reportedly failed to provide services at numerous weddings.
A sample of affected customers mentioned in the lawsuit showed that these effects extended to Kanawha, Preston and Putnam counties.
As word spread of his inability to honor contracts, many consumers canceled their contracts in April and May 2021, leading Smith to file for bankruptcy. She identified more than 135 “consumer creditors” in her file related to her DJ services, saying the amount of debt she owed was “unknown”.
Smith was indicted by a Hancock County grand jury in September 2021 on a single count of fraudulent schemes. She pleaded guilty last February.
Morrisey’s lawsuit also asks a judge to order Smith to pay civil penalties of up to $5,000 “for each willful and repeated violation” of credit and consumer protection law.