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Racine County man conned by convicted sex offender

Racine County man conned by convicted sex offender

By Annie Scholz. CREATED Feb 13, 2012

CALEDONIA- A Racine County man didn't know it - but he hired a convicted sex offender to do work at his house.  And that convict ripped him off.

He found him on Craigslist.  He said he's used it before and had pretty good luck.  This time, his luck ran out.

"He seemed like he was an honest guy," said Jason Lanser.

Jason Lanser just wanted some work done on his back patio -- make it a little bigger, take away a few trees.  He tried the yellow pages, then he went to Craigslist.  That's where he got connected with Robert Brown.

Jason Lanser said, "He submitted a proposal, it was one that I liked, I trusted the guy and we went on with it."

Well, Brown took Lanser's deposit -- a thousand dollars, but he didn't do any of the work.  "There were red flags that went up and I kind of wish I had noticed them, but I didn't."

What Lanser also didn't know?  Brown is a registered sex offender.  TODAY'S TMJ4 went to the address he has listed.  He wasn't there, but his ex-wife was.  She told TODAY'S TMJ4 Brown has been on the run since October.

"I have no idea where he's at," said Robert Brown's ex-wife.

TODAY'S TMJ4 tried calling his phone, but there wasn't an answer.  Back at the Lanser's, Jason is still planning on getting the project done this spring.  And with a lesson learned.

If you have any information about brown or where he may be, there is a warrant out for his arrest. You should call police.