AG files suit against Penn Township photographer
The state Attorney General is suing a Penn Township photographer accused of failing to refund payments to some couples for missing their weddings or not delivering images from others.
But the photographer, Eric Porado, said he was baffled that Linda Kelly's Bureau of Consumer Protection filed the complaint in Westmoreland County last week because he told state attorneys he was willing to reimburse the customers through a payment plan.
Porado disputed some of the details in the suit, which was filed Jan. 4. He said the suit stems from the theft of about $10,000 worth of his camera equipment and memory cards filled with photos from ceremonies. He said he twice met last spring with state attorneys and indicated a willingness to work with them to repay the newlyweds.
Porado said he closed the photography business that he ran for about seven years after his car was broken into at a Robinson Township parking lot.
“I told (a state attorney), ‘I know I'm at fault here. I'm not a thief. I'm not trying to take anyone's money by any means.' I just didn't have it to be able to immediately give back,'” Porado said. “I feel horrible about all of it, and I was just kind of at a loss of what I can do.”
The state's filing, which accuses Porado of unfair and deceptive practices, states that Porado failed to appear at four weddings and failed to submit the photographs from two others.
Porado said there are only two weddings he didn't attend, though he informed the customers and attempted to find a fill-in photographer or acquire temporary equipment to document them.
“It just didn't end up being able to work out quick enough,” he said.
In some cases, Porado said, he couldn't provide the images because the only copies of them were on 15 memory cards that were stolen.
Attempts to interview the customers identified in the lawsuit were unsuccessful.
Porado's website advertised wedding packages for between $950 and $1,500, the lawsuit states. Customers paid 50 percent of the cost upon signing a contract and the other half one month before the wedding day.
Porado said he actually was relieved when the state attorneys got involved because he thought they would be able to arrange a payment plan. After hearing nothing from the state for months, Porado said, he was “totally shocked” to learn that a lawsuit was filed last week.
“I was agreeable and easy-going as to what they wanted, and I never heard back from them,” he said.
The case was assigned to Common Pleas Judge Anthony Marsili.
Chris Foreman is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8671, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.