Hill Country contractor charged with theft now accused of felony family violence

Nickles Wolfe, 31, was on bond for 2019 arrest at the time of the incident

Nickles Wolfe mugshot (Jim Wells County Sheriff's Department)

ORANGE GROVE, Texas – A Hill Country contractor accused of criminal wrongdoing by former clients in five counties now faces a felony assault charge, after investigators near Corpus Christi said he strangled a family member last summer, the KSAT 12 Defenders confirmed.

Nickles Wolfe, 31, was arrested in June, days after deputies with the Jim Wells County Sheriff’s Department were called to a home in Orange Grove for a disturbance, according to an information report released this month by the agency.

A department spokeswoman declined to release additional details about the case but said it has been forwarded to the district attorney’s office for the 79th Judicial District.

Wolfe was arrested and charged with multiple felonies in Gillespie County in August 2019, months after the Defenders uncovered issues with his now-shuttered construction company.

Hill Country contractor arrested months after Defenders exposed him

He is awaiting trial for theft of property between $150,000 and $300,000, a second-degree felony, misapplication of fiduciary property over $300,000, a first-degree felony, and two third-degree felony counts of exploitation of the elderly.

Multiple former clients of Wolfe told the Defenders he took payments for work and then abandoned the projects before they were completed.

Records show that trial date has been tentatively pushed to May 10 at the earliest as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on court settings in Texas.

Wolfe at one point was also a defendant in at least four civil lawsuits related to his company, records show.

One of Wolfe’s projects in Kendall County, which turned into an unsturdy carport with bowed beams, was supposed to cost under $18,000 to build. The homeowner told the Defenders in 2019 that the project’s cost ballooned to more than $80,000 since Wolfe’s work had to be dismantled and rebuilt properly.

A man in Gillespie County said he hired Wolfe in 2018 to build an enclosed barn and driveway, only to have Wolfe abandon the job before installing a ridge cap connecting both sides of the roof, failing to hook up electrical and failing to install windows inside the building. Wolfe also left behind large piles of trash, according to the homeowner, despite accepting full payment with the exception of a $2,000 completion fee.

A sergeant with the Gillespie County Sheriff’s Office told the Defenders in 2019 that he was, at one point, working seven criminal cases against Wolfe.

The state attorney general’s office eventually took over the case because it had the resources to properly handle it, Gillespie County officials said.

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