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Bronx Bridal Shop Owner Investigated For Alleged Fraud

NEW YORK (CBS 2) —  The Westchester District Attorney has launched a criminal investigation of a bridal shop owner following complaints from 34 clients.

CBS 2’S Katherine Brown reports that the brides claim Michelle Mears took their money and never delivered their dresses.

Investigators said Mears had shops in at least seven locations over the past three years – including her latest in the Bronx.

Kristen Romano is among those who said they were hoodwinked by Mears.

“We were out a lot of money…still out a lot of money,” Romano said.

Romano said she ordered dresses for her entire wedding party totaling nearly $2,000.

“We knew we were not going to see those dresses,” Romano said.

Investigators said Mears has gone by several aliases including Lena Garriola, Lee Garriola and Michellina.

Authorities also said Mears may have taken advantage of customers who came to her for dresses over the internet.

State Senator Jeffrey Klein is heading the probe against Mears and said he was contacted Thursday by at least one woman who feels she was taken advantage of by Mears online.

“Whats happening here is much worse than we originally though,” Klein said.

Mears spoke with CBS 2 in July and said she was just getting a bad rap from her clients.

“They may not have liked the fact that they were held to their contract. They may not have liked the fact that I didn’t throw things in free,” Mears said.

CBS 2 reached out to Mears Friday for comment, but she did not return phone calls.

Klein said Mears’ words carried little weight with him.

“I believe these women,” Klein said, “I do not believe Michelle Mears.”

Complaints have also been filed with the Better Business Bureau, the Yonkers Department of Consumer Affairs, and the Attorney General.


One Comment

  1. Lisa Garson says:

    The fact is that many whom made allegations were deposed as my friend was for this story by Michelle Mears attorney, and many are now being sued for slander, libel and character assignation. I heard she has a great attorney and that this whole story was a vendetta my bride whom worked at channel 2 and in the media and this same bride made a blog to contact all these people. Many think she will get tens of thousands of dollars if not millions for this mess.

  2. Karen says:

    Michelle Mears is a con artist and should be shut down for good. She has a way of making you think you can’t get the dress you want unless you give her a deposit that day. She also tries to sell you her sample dress and brand new.

  3. Jesus says:

    Mears ran a very shady operation at her Dobbs Ferry shop, often trying to pull a fast one.

  4. Samantha says:

    The bridal store is located in the Bronx.
    Lily Fleur
    3188 Philip Avenue
    Bronx, NY 10465

    Previous Bridal Stores: Le Bella Couture in Dobbs Ferry, Alexa Bridal in Yonkers, My Belle Boutique in Yonkers – two different locations

  5. Samantha says:

    I can not wait until Michele Mears is charged for all the wrong she has done.
    She is a Brides Nightmare!

  6. Patricia says:

    I hope they get this woman once and for all. For some reason, she seems to be one step ahead of the law. Why hasn’t she been arrested?

  7. Marlene says:

    They are talking about a Westchester case yet the reporter speaks of Throggsneck in the Bronx in the end. Where is this bridal shop?

    1. Samantha says:

      Lily Fleur
      3188 Philip Avenue
      Bronx, NY 10465

  8. carl says:

    Its this brazen disregard of other peoples property that warrants tireless prosecution.

Comments are closed.

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