Cincinnati rug seller accused of running deceptive 'store-closing' sales

Cincinnati rug seller accused of running deceptive 'store-closing' sales

MONTGOMERY, OH (FOX19) - A Montgomery business is facing a lawsuit from the Attorney General's Office for allegedly running deceptive "store closing" sales.

On a busy strip with several stores competing for business, it can be hard to lure in customers. The Aria Rug Center is now accused of pretending to go out of business to attract shoppers, which hasn't gone unnoticed by several in the community.

"They continuously have going out of business signs and they're not. For the past five years they've repeatedly had those signs up," said Amy Schreffler, who works near the store.

On Thursday, the Attorney General's Office filed a lawsuit against Stalco Enterprises Incorporated, which has been operating as Aria Rug Center on Montgomery Road.

The AG's office says in June of 2017 the store hung up signs stating "Building Sold Store Closing 85 percent off all rugs."

Some shoppers say it worked getting them in the door.

"It's attractive and if you're looking for rugs or carpet that that's what pulls you in the store. Yeah it's misleading," said Roger Foster, a previous Aria Rug shopper.

However, he caught on to the alleged scheme.

"Driving by we made the remark, oh going out of business again -- nothing changes," he said.

The lawsuit points out that the alleged stunt has happened before. The Attorney General's Office says in 2009 the company had a similar violation and was threatened with a $10,000 fine.

Schreffler says she is shocked the business was able to get away with the alleged misleading advertisements for so long.

"Of course that's wrong, yeah. I guess it marketing but it's the wrong way to go about marketing," she said.

The Attorney General's office says the lawsuit was filed after receiving several complaints.

FOX19 tried reaching out to the owner of Aria Rug Center, but the owner has not yet returned our calls.

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