As most of you are aware, Matt Layman (RAIVJudge70) had agreed to do a full restoration on my brother Derek’s 1969 Camaro X-11. Just to update everyone, Derek will be making the 2013 Hot Rod Power Tour; however, he WILL NOT be driving his beloved Camaro. Why? Where do I begin….?
Pictures will never do justice on how Matt raped my brother and sister-in-law. Let me start from the beginning. As you may recall, Matt threw a party on October 8, 2011. That was the weekend I dropped Jade off with Matt to have him repair the quarter panels on Jade. The very NEXT weekend, Derek dropped his 69 Camaro off with Matt.
Fast forward a couple months to December 10th, that is when I was scheduled to pick my car up. At that time, Matt had told me that Jade was ready and that I would be shocked! In fact, I have saved text messages from Matt telling me that Jade looked good enough that she was “SEMA” show quality. As some of you have seen in person, she is nowhere near SEMA show ready. Not only do I have runs in my paint, but you can clearly see DA Sanding marks underneath the paint. I now have clear coat peeling off my door and fender, and there is overspray, literally, everywhere!! At that moment, at Matt’s house, I called Derek and said, come get your car. Matt is all talk. But, Derek being the gentleman that he is, wanted to give Matt the benefit of the doubt. I was so upset that I literally loaded my car on the trailer and left Matt’s house instantly. I canceled my plans of hanging out with him the weekend and went straight back to Alabama. Matt knew instantly how upset and hurt I was and much he let me down; but yet, he has never once admitted to all his mistakes. For the past year all I’ve heard is, “I want to make it right”…. But yet, no explanation or any resolution on how he’s going to make it right. Now he refuses to answer his phone or emails…. Go figure!! I went as far as to get estimates to have Justin, the original painter, redo my car….. But yet, Matt continues to ignore and dodge me.
Now, on to Derek’s car; the past year has been nothing but lies from Matt. For months, Derek & Kathy have been trying to take a weekend off to come look at the progress of the car. Time and time again, Matt has reassured them that the car was looking better than “new” and that they would be completely shocked at the result. Derek gave Matt over $6,000 for new sheet metal for his car. Let me repeat that, Derek gave Matt over $6,000 for new quarters, a new trunk pan, new rear valance panel, new inner quarters, and new frame rails. Matt even showed Derek & Kathy a receipt!!! For a year, it was lie after lie after lie…. They would ask for updated detailed pictures, Matt would never deliver. It was ALWAYS one excuse after another. If his phone wouldn’t take pictures, they couldn’t get them to download on the internet. Hell, at one point Kathy asked to send a memory card in the mail and they would pay for it. But yet, nothing ever came.
After pushing the delivery date back several times, month after month, Kathy finally got in touch with the interior guy. The car had a no shit, drop date for interior. According to Matt, it would be mostly put back together and completely running before it went to interior. Matt told my brother and sister that he had installed the new American Powertrain Tremec 5-Speed, installed the brand new custom Vintage Heating/AC unit, and went as far as to tell them that everything worked perfect. He even informed them that he had driven the car. They believed that once it was back from interior, all Matt would have to do is button up last minute things before delivering it back to them. Sadly, he was full of nothing but lies and deceit!!
The truth is; the car NEVER got new sheet metal. Matt stole that $6,000 AND blew it!! Derek & Kathy went to look at the car in person, while it was at interior and both of them cried over the shape of it. Derek called Matt from the interior shop and to no surprise; he had no reason or excuses. The car is a complete loss, as the engine has sat outside, in the weather, completely open for a year. Parts are rusted beyond repair, and now they have invested over $6K for interior that is a waste. The trunk pan still has holes in it and the frame rails are still rusted. The car is waiver than the Atlantic Ocean, but yet, Matt was going to take “care” of them. Matt did them so dirty that Derek drove straight to his house to pick up as many new parts as possible. Of course Matt wasn’t home, so Derek & blew his phone up. When he showed up, Tina literally dropped him off at the driveway and took off. According to Derek & Kathy, she was waiting a block or two away with two other guys. I’m assuming they were there just in case Derek started to beat the shit out of Matt…..
Where’s everything at now. Well, here are some pictures of how it showed up to Dereks house, after it left the interior shop. Matt did pay to ship it back to Missouri, along with EVERY single piece of equipment that I have ever given him. Many of you may remember Matt wearing a Digital Camo Boonie Hat with his last name on it…. Yup, I gave that to him and he actually had the balls to send it back. I realize that pictures will never do anything justice, but I assure you that it’s bad enough that an insurance adjuster out of Kansas City, MO has NEVER seen anything this horrible in his 20+ years of working with Classic Cars.
We still can’t figure out what would possess Matt to lie for over a year, hiding and covering up every single white lie. What hurts me the most is the fact that I was the one that stuck my neck out on the line and referred Matt. I’m the one that defended Matt over and over and yet, this is how he treated Derek and Kathy and their prize possession. They don’t have any kids, so this was truly their baby and now it’s destroyed. Matt manipulated them for over a year and completely raped them. No, he doesn’t answer his phone or emails. No, he hasn’t refunded them the $6,000. No, he hasn’t done ANYTHING to help repair Jade. All he did was take a perfectly good car and destroy it, completely breaking my brother down during the entire process. Derek will never give Classic Muscle Cars another chance, as this was a living nightmare for him. Because of Matt, he has been living in a Hell trying to get this car ready for the 2013 Power Tour…..
My point in this entire email is simple; for ANYONE that is considering doing business or trusting Matt Layman, I would highly reconsider!! Yes, there are two sides to every story, but all you have to do is look at the car in person, read all the texts and emails from Matt, himself, and you’ll know the truth. Every single Text, Email, and Phone Call has been documented. After all, the truth will Always, ALWAYS set you free!!
Derek, I’m truly sorry brother. All I can say is- Karma is a BITCH!!!