The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

June 21, 2013

Real estate broker filed for bankruptcy protection three times in 10 years

Criminal investigation ongoing, APD spokesman says


◆ He did not pay federal income taxes for eight years, from 1996 to 2003. At one point he owed the government more than $310,000, according to a claim filed by the Internal Revenue Service. He also owed more than $26,000 in Indiana income taxes, according to the Indiana Department of Revenue.

◆ By 2007, Shoot owed Madison County more than $88,000 in unpaid property taxes; that amount was later reduced to $61,600 in an agreement worked out with Shoot’s lawyers.

◆ In the most recent bankruptcy, filed in September 2006, Shoot reported property and personal assets valued at $704,200, against claims of more than $660,000. Shoot and his wife reported monthly income of $6,913, and $4,381 in expenditures.

The Herald Bulletin spoke with two local attorneys who represented parties in some of Shoot’s bankruptcy filings. They asked not to be quoted by name, but said the effect of these separate, but consecutive bankruptcies was to tie up legal claims for years and create confusion about how the financial tangles were being resolved.

“Everybody was trying to take care of their own client needs and nobody was trying to stop this guy,” one lawyer said of how events transpired in bankruptcy court. “The guy was pretty skilled at gaming the system.”

David McNamar, Shoot’s lawyer, said he was unable to comment on such speculation.

“As to other attorneys’ opinions, I hope that they have facts to support those allegations,” McNamar said.

One creditor, Ray Bush Sr. (now deceased), in a 2005 filing objecting to the bankruptcy plan, complained that he sold Shoot 10 residential properties on land contract, but Shoot became delinquent in making payments. Bush claimed Shoot wanted to pay only about $3,600 on his past-due balance, when the actual past-due balance totaled nearly $60,000.

“All of the contracts contained ‘balloon provisions’ calling for the debtors (Shoot and his wife) to pay in full the contract within three or four years of their inception. All of the contracts are years past due,” the filing states.

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