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Green Tree man accused of scamming Cherry Tree church for $20K

Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
 

A Cherry Tree-area church is out $20,000 it paid an Allegheny County man in October for two transport vans he never delivered, giving them only a multitude of excuses, state police at Indiana said.

Stephen Worth Longstreth, 43, whose last known address was Arnold Acres in Green Tree, is wanted on theft charges for failing to deliver the vans to Kinport Assembly of God Church in Green Township.

Clymer District Judge George Thachik issued a warrant for Longstreth's arrest based on the criminal complaint that Trooper Allison Goswick filed on Wednesday. Police said Longstreth has additional outstanding warrants in Pennsylvania and Virginia.

The Rev. Chris Massey could not be reached for comment on Friday. A spokeswoman said the church had no comment.

On Oct. 11, the church wired Longstreth $20,000 into a First Niagara Bank account under the name 360 Sales/Solutions LLC of Greenacres, Fla., according to the criminal complaint. The suspect claimed he operated the business with his sister, who was not identified.

Neither the Pennsylvania Bureau of Corporations nor the Florida Division of Corporations has a listing for 360 Sales/Solutions in Green-acres, which is south of West Palm Beach.

James Smith, vice president of Med-Van Transport of Northern Cambria, provided Massey with Longstreth's contact information and assisted in the purchase, police said. Smith could not be reached for comment on Friday.

Longstreth promised to deliver the vans by Nov. 1 and told church representatives they could select two of the five vans he had for sale. The suspect provided the church with five vehicle identification numbers, which Goswick's investigation later determined to be invalid. Through emails and text messages, Longstreth offered the church numerous other vans but made excuses for missing the delivery date. He told the church in December that he had lost his cell phone, police said.

Longstreth promised again on Monday to deliver the vans. But Goswick said Longstreth told her he was in Kentucky and could not deliver them.

State police did not say in the affidavit whether Longstreth ever had vans to sell.

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