More Workers Claim Unpaid Work By Above and Beyond Construction

Geena Martinez
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - Broke and far from home. That's what a group of construction workers in Midland are dealing with after they claim a subcontractor never paid them a dime for their work.

If the story sounds familiar, it is.

The same subcontractor, Above and Beyond Construction, is accused of ripping off a different group of workers just a few weeks ago.

NewsWest 9 was contacted Monday night by several men from out of state who say they were hired by the subcontractor to help build the Hilton Garden Inn. But on Monday, they were fired and never paid for their work.

When Jemal Walker came to Midland all the way from Mobile, AL, he wasn't expecting to leave here empty-handed.

"We haven't got any money, we don't have anywhere to stay, we have no way of getting home at all," Walker said.

Walker and several of his buddies contacted NewsWest 9 on Monday night claiming they were hired by a subcontractor named Terry Davis, who owns Above and Beyond Construction.

They said they worked for two weeks on the new Hilton Garden Inn but were never paid.

"We brung all these guys up here to work for this man and we haven't seen a penny," Walker said. "He owes each of us at least $2,500."

This might sound familiar. Above and Beyond was the same company accused of not paying workers from El Paso about three weeks ago.

On Monday, the men told NewsWest 9 they were told by the hotel they're staying at that Above and Beyond Construction had been terminated from the job and they had to leave.

"We down here stuck, nowhere to stay. We've been living outside since 11:00 yesterday (Monday) morning," Demetrius Hardie said. "We just in the park living like refugees."

The men claim not getting paid is just the beginning. They said they were fed bread and water for lunches and they were crammed into one hotel room with as many as 20 men.

The group said they also paid for building materials out of their own pocket.

"Nothing was met from the day we got here," Joseph Williams said. "Nothing he said was actually true. I feel like he needs to take responsibility and be a man and step up to the plate and do right."

NewsWest 9 contacted Davis. He was arrested last week in Midland on an warrant out of Lubbock. That warrant is unrelated to any of the allegations in this story.

Davis would not say he was supposed to pay the group because he claims they are their own subcontracting company.

"This other group, they're called Heavenly Body," Davis said. "I have the business card for them and I have them signing in under Heavenly Body."

Davis said he paid for the men to stay in a hotel, bought them groceries and paid for their gas.

Davis also confirmed that his company was terminated from the project but he said the workers were taken care of.

"They're not being stranded, I put them in motel rooms after they got kicked out," Davis said.

But when we pressed further, we got a different answer.

"They told us they have not stayed anywhere since 11:00 yesterday morning," NewsWest 9 asked Davis.

"Yeah, yesterday (Monday) we were terminated. Everyone else went their separate ways," Davis said.

"OK but you just said you put them in a hotel room after that," NewsWest 9 asked.

"No, I tried to put them in a hotel room," Davis said.

Davis said he's been in the business for over 10 years and he's never had problems with subcontracting workers until coming to Midland.

But for these men, that's not convincing enough.

For now, they're just looking forward to going back home to Alabama.

Above and Beyond has one complaint from the Better Business Bureau. EBCO is the general contractor. An unidentified man who answered the EBCO office on the project site said EBCO would be sending money to the workers to help them get back home.