WASHINGTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL) – A Unicoi business owner is facing felony theft charges, police report.

According to the Washington County Tennessee Sheriff’s Office (WCSO), Steven Chase Willis, owner of Earth Effects Landscaping, was arrested on June 25 for theft of over $10,000.

The release states the WSCO received complaints of Willis’ landscaping business taking large down payments from customers without returning to start the job. The business reportedly stopped operations after thousands of dollars were stolen as down payments from customers for contracted projects through Willis.

After an investigation, Willis was charged and booked on a $7,500 bond. After Willis posted bond, authorities arrested him on additional charges, including the following:

  • Theft over $10,000
  • Theft of services over $10,000
  • Worthless checks over $500
  • Deceptive business practices

He is being held in the Unicoi County Jail as of Thursday afternoon, according to a release from police.

The WCSO urgers anyone victimized by Willis and/or his business, Earth Effects, to call (423) 788-1414 to make a report.