(Continued from part 1 of 2)
The staff members based out of Trustify’s opulent Arlington, Virginia Headquarters unfortunately learned the hard way that they would end up working without pay. They must now join the ranks of Trustify’s former landlord, public relations firm and attorneys whose paychecks were backburnered while Boice and Mellon indulged in lavish spending. Boice also owes over 10K in child support backpay. As though the FBI investigating now investigating him for embezzlement wasn't enough.
Of course, Colorado and the Rocky Mountain region are built upon a rich history of boom/bust stories, most of which do not end well. There's the Baby Doe Tabor story and all the prospector's gold sites that eventually worked their way to profitability by building ski resorts and turning caved in mine shafts into high end tourist resorts.
The intrigue of the venture capitalist "uberizing" the private investigator industry with an app was astutely expressed by PursutMag Editor-in-Chief, Hal Humphreys [Disclosure: PursuitMag and the Denver Private Investigator Blog are content partners] who is a fan of disruptors and of startups. “Most of them fail. Most of them fail miserably" he also pointed out but, "every once in a while, one hits and changes everything."
Pursuit published several articles about Trustify and some of the other authors were not as forgiving as it's Editor but it's coverage over time provide a great sense of the former dumpster fire's rise and fall.
Despite it's Western history, the Rocky Mountain region didn't pull many punches when it came to Trustify. Wyoming, Private Investigator, Dean Beers, in fact, posted about the efforts he and the Professional Private Investigator Association of Colorado (PPIAC) made to report the fact Trustify was operating without a license to the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies.
According to Beers, the National Council of Investigation & Security Services (NCISS) was also involved in researching the history of the company and pointing out the problematic nature of an intermediary operating without licensure as well as the history of Boice's original company, Flim Flam. Their apprehensive commentary on the business goes back as far as the Denver Private Investigator Blog's does.
The DrivenForward blog maintained by Glen Hellman wins for most consistent, persistent and comprehensive coverage of the Trustify fiasco. It contains primary documents as well as a running chart of statuses of lawsuits against Trustify. Hellman was actually pursued by one of Boice's attorneys and posted the notice on his blog.
My final effort to verify the derelict status of the site’ was to call the 888 number. I dialed and got a busy signal. When was the last time I heard one of those?
Will the consumer driven demand for a standard hourly with no retainer fee be met by yet another disruptor rendering the private investigator industry as we know it as obsolete as a busy signal?
Only time will tell. Hopefully savvy investigators as well as savvy tech entrepreneurs will continue learning from the mistakes of their predecessors.
Washington Biz Journal - https://www.bizjournals.com/washington/news/2019/08/22/heres-whats-left-of-trustifys-private-eye-inspired.html
Driven Forward - https://drivenforward.com/former-trustify-employees-awarded-260-thousand-judgement/
Washingtonian - https://www.washingtonian.com/2018/12/09/is-the-blogger-mr-cranky-glen-hellman-out-to-save-dc-tech-industry-or-destroy-it/
PursuitMag - http://pursuitmag.com/a-trustify-postmortem/
By Susanna Speier
Denver Private Investigator Blogger
The viral social media phenomenon referred to as "Black and White Challenge" or "7 Day 7 Photo Challenge" is not for everybody.
If you're inclined to avoid social media except for an investigation research took, this is probably not the project for you, however if you're one of those gumshoe/ amateur photogs, this could be a great way to share what the world of a PI looks like while shaking up your aesthetic sensibilities and maybe flexing your social media engagement abilities, too.
Here's how it works: someone tags you on social media telling you it's your turn to do the #BlackAndWhiteChallenge. (Some refer to it as the 7 day 7 photo challenge). One tagged you will be expected to post a black and white photo a day for the next seven days with no explanations. At least that is how the official rules work.
I happened to be right around the corner from the Ross Investigators office, located at 1665 Grant Street, ste 304, Denver, CO 80204, when I noticed a Jelly Cafe employee was wearing a "Trust Nobody" t-shirt. Since it seemed like a great aphorism for a private investigator, I decided to turn it into a black and white challenge photo. When I asked the two woman in the photo if I could use the black and white toned photo in the Denver Private Investigator Blog the woman wearing the t-shirt (whose name is Shannon) responded, "Heck yah" before adding "and I stand behind it!"
If you'd like to try your hand at black and white iphoneography / photography through the black and white challenge then give one of your black and whites's a private investigator slant and share with us on Twitter or Facebook so we can compile a collection of black and white glimpses of the private investigator world!
By Susanna Speier
Denver Private Investigator Blogger
This summer, the Denver Private Investigator's Blog made the PI Now list of top private investigator blogs!! It ranked 4th place after Brian Willingham's Diligentia blog (which ranked #1), Pursuit Magazine (which ranked #2 and with whom the Denver Private Investigator Blog has a content partnership) and Guns, Gams & Gumshoes (which ranked 3rd). We are honored to have The Denver Private Investigator Blog: Mile Hi PI featured among so many other informative and well renowned online publications.
PI Now's rating system was based on the premise that the private investigation blogs most worth your time contain the following criteria: they are readable and interesting. The website is accessible and easy to navigate and the content is relevant and regularly updated.
Meanwhile, as summer winds down and we all dust off our nonexistent fedoras and shake out our trench coats, plans for the Rocky Mountain region private investigator conference are currently underway.
The Professional Private Investigators Association of Colorado (PPIAC) conference starts tomorrow, Thursday, September 14th and runs through Saturday, September 16th at Denver Marriott in Westminster and you can still get tickets.
The conference will include an optional class 8:00 - 5:00 pm class with certified forensic interviewer, Brandon Perron which begins on the 14th. There will be also be a fraud investigation workshop with Richard Brooks a Russia investigation workshop with Anastasiya Bolton and an ethics workshop with JP Moore. Andy Kindred, Joe H. Dickerson, Brandon Perron, Jeff Boxer, Kitty Hailey.
If you are a Colorado attorney, please note that the Colorado Supreme Court has just authorized 12 general credits and three ethics credits for attendance. Go here to register.
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