MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - The Internal Revenue Service is investigating after tax documents, customer identities and more were all found in a dumpster behind a Mo' Money Tax Service office in Whitehaven.
"I assume the landlord went inside of the location and whatever reason he decided to throw the files in the dumpster; that is not something Mo' Money Taxes practices," said Markey Granberry, co-founder of Mo' Money Taxes.
The tax documents, which also included names and contact information, were out in the open when abc24.com arrived Monday morning. Eventually, Memphis Police showed up, followed by IRS investigators.
"The landlord, I guess he doesn't, ya know, he's not too fond of people's personal information." said Granberry.
In an email sent hours later, Mo' Money attempted to clear up the confusion.
"Mo' Money Taxes had already given notice to the leasing manager of their office that they would be vacating on Saturday, February 11, 2012," the company said.
"They took out large furniture items, and other personal items. All of their staff was instructed to leave any files in the location." The statement said. "Their office manager was also instructed to arrange for "Shred-It" services to arrive at the location, on Monday, February 13, 2012, to properly shred all documents.
"All parties at Mo' Money Taxes are under the impression that the leasing company must have ordered a clean out of our former office space before our contracted services with "Shred It" could arrive."
Mo' Money then provided a document that it said was from a company hired to shred documents.
A representative from the shredding company could not be reached for comment Monday night on why those documents were never shredded on the 13th.
Granberry and Mo' Money's public relations firm didn't return repeated calls and emails seeking comment on why those documents sat unattended for more than a week.
According to Paul Billings, lawyer for Palmer Brothers, which is the landlord of the property on Elvis Presley Blvd, Mo' Money quit paying their rent, and Billings says he obtained a judgment against Mo' Money towards the end of 2011. Billings, on Palmer Brothers behalf, entered into a settlement agreement with Mo' Money to pay the balance due. Billings says they started making some payments in January, but it was just a couple payments and it didn't add up to the balance owed.
At 10 a.m. on Feb. 17, an eviction was served at the property by a private process server. Billings say generally speaking, after that eviction is served, the process server will come in and throw everything out; figuring whatever is left at the property isn't wanted by the former tenet.
According to Bruce Andrew, a VP at Shred-It, their Memphis office was contacted by Mo' Money on Feb. 13 and an agreement was signed and reached the next day. Andrew says at that time, Mo' Money was told Shred-it wouldn't be available to actually shred the documents until Feb 28th due to scheduling and availability. Shred-It says they never heard back from Mo' Money about the revised date.