Email This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated. Now, dozens of men and women who were coerced into signing up for a high-priced dating service are getting a pleasant surprise.
It all started seven years ago with a FOX6 hidden camera investigation. Elliot Doering is one of the many who shelled out six figures for a dating service membership. He still lives in the same, one-bedroom apartment in Shorewood. He still lives alone. He rides a bicycle and doesn't have a car. So when he saw a sign promising he could meet "Shorewood singles" in , it caught his eye.
The ad led him to Great Expectations in Wauwatosa, where a fast-talking sales rep pressured him into signing a confusing, long-term contract. Run that by me again," Doering said in an interview with FOX6 back in Worst of all, Dpering found the "local" dating service wasn't so local after all.
It was a complete scam," Doering said. In and , dozens of consumers told the FOX6 Investigators that they, too, got taken for thousands of dollars. FOX6's hidden cameras showed that the company's sales pitch was more like an interrogation. You're robbin' people for a living?
It just ain't right, you know? The Department of Justice sued Great Expectations for violating the state's Do Not Call list, misrepresenting the number of members, and for using "high pressure, oppressive tactics" to get people to sign contracts. After the lawsuit was filed in , Great Expectations fled the state, and Doering wondered if he would ever get his money back. I figured well, maybe he's fighting it and he lost," Doering said. Five years after the lawsuit was filed and eight years after he signed the contract - Doering got a letter informing him that the state had won the case.
Check's in the mail! Since then, the dating service has closed its doors in Arizona, Wisconsin and several other states. According to the company's website, there are still eight existing centers in four states - Colorado, Florida, Ohio and Texas.