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Suspected serial scammer in Houston-area arrested again as victims describe litany of scams

HOUSTON – A man busted months ago after being accused of bilking businesses out of thousands of dollars is back at it, according to police.

Chad Skelton was arrested in Chambers County this week on several charges, including theft, deceptive business practices, and fraudulent use and possession of personal ID information. He is held on a $100,000 bond.

We first told you about Skelton in March when he was arrested for lying about having a sick daughter to get money from businesses in Pasadena, Deer Park, and La Porte. He was charged with theft at that time.

New scam accusations

Several people reached out to Channel 2 Investigates claiming they had been scammed by Skelton recently, including two chemical riggers who lost their jobs when the pandemic began.

“He said he wanted me as a supervisor,” said Wesley Patterson. “He told me he was going to pay me $35 an hour.”

“With COVID, you know, construction workers needing work, he hit us there, knowing we would jump on board wanting to feed our families," said Steven Bonin.

Both men say they paid Skelton hundreds of dollars for pre-employment screenings and then never heard from him again.

Melissa Harpster, the secretary at First Baptist Church Highlands, said Skelton told her he was a soldier about to be deployed and needed some money.

“He called up and said he was in the military and that he was helping the people in Louisiana from the hurricane,” Harpster explained. “Scammers don’t have a conscience. They’re just out to get your money.”

Last week, Dr. Margaret Bradley, a dentist and single mother of three, said Skelton told her a similar story about helping a family of hurricane victims by selling boxes of barbecue beef for $25 each.

“The family had seven children and they had been displaced,” Bradley said. “Altogether, we gave him over $300.”

Channel 2 Investigates other law enforcement agencies may be looking into Skelton’s recent activities.