San Antonio contractor arrested for not finishing his work

Neil Melendrez was taken into police custody

SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio contractor is behind bars and facing three felony charges of theft of more than $2,500 but less than $30,000.

Neil Melendrez was taken into police custody.

“I’m not guilty,” Melendrez said.

“Why are you in handcuffs?” asked KSAT Reporter John Paul Barajas.

“I don’t know why all these clients are coming out with these deals about all this, that I’m stealing from them,” Melendrez said.

Although Melendrez claims his innocence, San Antonio police say he’s guilty of taking payment for work he never finished.

“It’s a crime once you get paid. If the victim has already paid the contractor and the work has not been done, it’s already a crime because you’re taking advantage of someone,” SAPD Public Information Officer Ximena Alvarez said.

According to SAPD, Melendrez was paid $8,300 on October 2 to build a carport, then refused to finish the job.

He’s also accused of accepting $2,000 for a new patio from a second victim on October 6, only to request an additional $2,600 for the job that was never completed.

SAPD said Melendrez took payment from a third victim in 2021, but details on that case are limited.

“What do you say to the people who are pressing charges?” Barajas asked.

“Well I do apologize, but y’all are doing wrong on this,” Melendrez said.

SAPD asks anyone else who may be a victim to also come forward.

About the Author:

John Paul Barajas is a reporter at KSAT 12. Previously, he worked at KRGV 5 in the Rio Grande Valley. He has a degree from the University of Houston. In his free time, he likes to get a workout in, spend time on the water and check out good eats and drinks.