PHOENIX (KSAZ) - An alleged scam involving a sneaker consignment store has reportedly left dozens of Valley residents high and dry.
The alleged victims are reportedly out thousands of dollars, and the consignment store's owner is reportedly nowhere to be found.
Rare or exclusive sneakers, like Nike Air Jordans or Adidas Yeezy Boosts, can go for big bucks in the open market. Collectors - called "sneakerheads", camp out to grab the rare kicks, and when they're ready to walk away from a pair, they can cash out.
Kicks sold online and at consignment stores could be sold for $9,000, $10,000, or even $11,000.
In the Valley, Pound For Pound in Phoenix was a popular sneaker consignment store that closed in August. While it is not uncommon for businesses to close, an investigation has found that the owner allegedly owes multiple people in the Valley thousands of dollars.
"They sold for a grand total of $750, and I was supposed to get $600," said Michael Montoya. He has been trying to get his money from Pound for Pound, for almost a year. He brought three pairs of sneakers, last November.
"I was told by an employee that the shoes were sold on November 10, November 25, and November 29," said Montoya. "Literally within a month, all three had been sold."
Montoya's proof is a receipt from the store, showing three pairs of Jordans ranging from $120 to $280, with Pound For Pound set to keep 20% of the sale. Montoya never got a dime before he found out the store had suddenly closed
"I understand if you can't give me the money, but you can't even give me the shoes back," said Montoya. "At that point, it's stealing!"
Pound For Pound had two other locations in Los Angeles and Dallas. Both have also shut down, with online complaints alleging many others have been ripped off in California and Texas as well.
In mid-August, Pound For pound still had sneakers on their shelves while closed. By mid-September, the store had cleared out.
"You're helpless," said Mark Fernandez. "They close down, and you don't know what to do."
Fernandez dropped off a substantial sneaker collection to Pound For Pound earlier in the year. Some were sold, but some didn't. Then, Pound For Pound reportedly told Fernandez to come back and pick up his shoes last month, while they still owed him money.
"Almost $1,100," said Fernandez.
Customers, like Flagstaff's Eric Bohn, can't find Pound For Pound's owner, Brandon Naper. Bohn had successfully done sneaker business with Pound For Pound in the past, but that changed this year.
They left several other sneakerheads without any payment," said Bohn. He is reportedly still owed over $1,700, and is actively trying to get that back.
"I filed a suit with the Maricopa Justice Court," said Bohn. "The Small Claims Court."
There is, however, one problem. Naper, Bohn said, is nowhere to be found. Bohn's attorney has not been able to serve the Naper. FOX 10 Phoenix also tried to contact Naper, to no avail.
In the meantime, multiple people who are reportedly still owed thousands of dollars are left hanging, while they wait for the other shoe to drop.
"I think they started out maybe with good intentions, and just got a little over their head financially," said Bohn.
"That $600 is a lot of money," said Montoya.
"It's like, pay back what's owed," said Fernandez. "That's the bottom line."
We reached out to the Attorney General's Office for consumer advice, and an official there said those who believe they are a victim, and are owed money from this consignment store, should contact the Attorney General's Office and file a complaint.