California Contractor Sues Reality Show 'Catch a Contractor' for Alleged Defamation

Jeff Dillman says show “Catch a Contractor” made him appear to be a criminal.

ByABC News
March 23, 2015, 1:37 PM

— -- A contractor is trying to build a case against Spike TV and others after he says he was ambushed on the reality TV show “Catch a Contractor.”

Jeff Dillman is suing the show’s network, Spike TV, producers, show expert and a homeowner for fraud, false imprisonment and defamation.

In court papers filed March 20th in Los Angeles, Dillman claims the show “caused damage to his professional reputation,” “adversely affected his personal health and well-being” and “may force an early retirement.

“Catch a Contractor” features licensed contractor Skip Bedell, his wife, Alison, a private investigator and comedian Adam Carolla, who used to be a carpenter. The show says it aims to right renovations gone wrong by tracking down the contractor.

Dillman was featured in an episode that aired last March. He was confronted after the homeowners claimed he left their home unsafe and in shambles.

“You can either come back and do the job properly, return the money or we’re going to help the family take you to court,” Carolla said to Dillman in the episode.

While Dillman acknowledged on the show that some of the work he contracted out was shoddy, Dillman claims in the lawsuit that he “had no choice but to sign” a show release “under extreme duress,” agreeing to be on “Catch a Contractor” and finish the remodel.

Dillman’s attorney says Dillman completed the job but was wronged by the whole experience.

“They set up what they call a sting which was a complete ruse,” Matthew McNicholas said. “They had him come in and finish the job, which he was finishing, and then afterwards they used various clips and held up his picture and called him a crook and a criminal.”

Dillman is asking for damages in excess of $25,000. He says the show made him look like a criminal but says he has never been arrested for anything in his life.

Spike TV, the homeowner and the show’s hosts each declined to comment when reached by ABC News. The two production companies named as defendants did not respond to requests for comment.