Bad pool builder – and his attorney

Bad pool builder – and his attorney

FOX 2 (WJBK)Look who’s got a new photo for their Instagram feed – it’s internet personality Brandon Heitmann.  Yep, Brandon the pool-building-bum has been arrested again.

“There’s going to be justice and that justice is going to take place here in Macomb County,” said Prosecutor Pete Lucido.

Justice is taking place on the federal level as well. It seems Brandon’s company’s ‘restructuring bankruptcy’ has been involuntarily placed into the ‘this company is toast’ category.

With official statements  like this, from a federal bankruptcy trustee, declaring: “The debtor and it’s sole owner and president, Brandon Heitmann, have engaged in conduct pre-and post-petition that is either dishonest or incompetent.”

Harsh words for the headmaster of the Heitmann Academy. And as bad as things are for Brandon Heitmann, it might be even worse for his criminal attorney.

Or should we say ex-attorney, now criminal, Glenn Franklin – because he just got convicted of felony wire fraud.

A lot has happened since Rob Wolchelk did his first story on Brandon just three months ago.

Heitmann runs a company called Exigent.  Brandon liked to brag a lot about his success, showing off fancy cars and vacations.
This influencer had a fancy website filled with videos, a get-rich-quick podcast and even his own school you could attend to achieve success as a builder like him, called “The Heitmann Academy.”

The problem is, Brandon wasn’t too good at putting in pools. He may have billed himself as a super-rich contractor, but he didn’t even have a contractor’s license.

He put in Becca and Alex’s pool for $100,000 but they say it wasn’t level and was sagging in spots and wouldn’t pass code.

DN paid Brandon more than $100,000 for her pool, which sat for two summers half-done and done wrong.

Joe and Angela handed over $60,000 for a pool to Brandon – but he never even broke ground.

Brandon finally got his contractor’s license last spring, but it was too late.

By this point the Shelby Township police were investigating and by the time Wolchek confronted him, Exigent was on the verge of extinction.

Bad pool builder – and his attorney

Wolchek: “Can I talk to you about your business?”

Brandon Heitman: “Talk to my attorney, thank you.”

Wolchek: “What’s that?”

Brandon Heitman: “You can talk to my attorney, thank you.”

Wolchek: “I want to talk to you right now. Brandon hang on. Hang on man. Brandon, c’mon. What’s going on with your business?”

Brandon Heitman: “You can talk to my attorney. Thank you.”

Wolchek: “I want to talk to you.”

Brandon Heitman: “Not now.”

Wolchek: “What’s going on with your business? You’re a talkative guy. I’ve seen your videos.”

Brandon Heitman: “Thank you.”

Brandon didn’t look so smarmy in his first mugshots after being charged with two counts of taking money under false pretenses over $20,000.

Then, while attending a preliminary hearing last month, Wolchek tried to speak to Brandon after court.

But his lawyer, who never responded to Rob’s calls and then went on a YouTube show claiming he didn’t call him back, started getting lippy to Wolchek.

Glenn Franklin: “We have no comment other than, the last time you spoke with him, he asked you to call me. I called you two, three times.”

Wolchek: “No you didn’t.”

Glenn Franklin: “I did. I have my phone records.”

Wolchek: “Okay, you show me that. What number did you call me at? I saw you on some little YouTube thing.”

Glenn Franklin: “Whatever number was on your card.  I have my phone records.”

Wolchek: “Well you show me that because I don’t believe you. So Brandon what’s your defense going to be?”

Glenn Franklin: “C’mon, let’s go (Franklin grabs Brandon to lead him away).”

Brandon did his walk of shame in silence as Wolchek tried to question him – and then his lawyer got lippy again. It was not the brightest move since Wolchek knew this guy was facing his own criminal charges.

Wolchek: “Are you Glenn Phillip Franklin, counselor?  Because if that’s you, you also have felony charges against you, don’t you?”

Wolchek: “Is that you counselor?  Here’s my card so you can make sure you can contact me. There’s my phone number. Is that you Mr. Franklin, right there, who also has felony charges?”

Glenn Franklin III rolls off in his impressive Porsche. But Glenn apparently didn’t impress a jury in federal court where he stood trial for being involved in a fraud scheme.

Earlier this month, he was convicted of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Glenn franklin’s attorney, Arnold Fink, told us he’s “Reasonably optimistic that his conviction will be set aside.”

He also said, “Glenn is a wonderful person, kind, gentle. A good friend and a good person to know.”

Well, apparently Brandon Heitmann disagrees because he’s got a new attorney – and he’s going to need one, because he’s been charged with another count of obtaining money under false pretenses over $20,000.

“We’re going to make sure these laws are followed, one way or the other,” Lucido said.

The Macomb County prosecutor says he’s going hard after cheating contractors.

“We win them squarely, we’ll lose them fairly, but here’s the bottom line – if you’re not adhering to what you’re supposed to be doing, we’re going to make sure that there’s punishment associated with it.”

Punishment is what Angela wants, she’s one of the victims who has a criminal case against Brandon and hopes they don’t offer him a deal, even if Brandon pays her back.

“Obviously the money would be great, but there’s other people out there as well, and what justice do they get?”

Next comes Brandon’s company’s bankruptcy which was filed as a Chapter 11 restructuring last summer.

On Thursday it was ordered by a federal judge to be converted to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

And Andrew Vara, the United States trustee called out Brandon harshly.

“Brandon Heitmann is the 100 percent owner and president of Exigent,” he said.  “The debtor failed to keep adequate business records. Specifically, the debtor cannot account for money it received from customers, cannot adequately explain how those funds were spent and has not reasonably justified funds withdrawn by Mr. Heitmann from the business accounts.”

The trustee says Brandon’s statements to the court were false and that he used the business as his own piggy bank.

Look at the amount of money Brandon drained from the company according to the court in just three months before filing bankruptcy.  The total: $173,508.

The pool guy and his lawyer both dove in and hit bottom hard.

“Brandon Heitmann and Attorney Glenn Franklin, just a couple of drips in the pool we call the Hhhhhall of Shame.”