A Granville motorcycle shop owner faces three felony charges after he allegedly scammed a man out of a $10,000 Harley-Davidson motorcycle and forged documents to get the bike’s title in his name, police said.
Donald A. Connolly, 41, of Granville, was charged with third-degree grand larceny and two counts of second-degree forgery after an investigation by State Police, authorities said. He said Monday that the case was the result of a business dispute and that he didn’t forge any paperwork, but simply wanted compensation for storage fees from the bike owner.
“I’ve been in business since 2010 and I’ve never had a complaint or anything,” Connolly said.
Conolly operates Shotgun Don’s Psycho Cycles on Route 149. A customer had asked him to sell the bike for him on a consignment basis, with Connolly to receive 10 percent of the purchase price.
State Police said the owner lives part of the year in Florida, and had difficulty reaching Connolly for several months to find out whether the 1999 Harley Road King had sold. When he finally reached him, Connolly told the owner he had put a lien on the vehicle for nearly $10,000 in storage charges but it had not been sold, officials said.
The owner contacted the state Department of Motor Vehicles, and was told there was no lien on the vehicle, but that the title had been signed over to Connolly. He contacted State Police last month.
Police determined Connolly forged the owner’s name on DMV paperwork to transfer the title to his name, authorities said.
Connolly, though, said the owner left the bike with him for nearly two years between 2013 and 2014, and owed storage charges on it. He said the owner agreed to sign it over to him, and the charges were higher than the bike’s worth.
“Then he came back 6 months later looking to buy the bike back,” Connolly said.
Connolly’s lawyer, Tucker Stanclift, said the complainant lost a civil case in Granville Town Court that focused on the accusations, and the man’s complaint to the state Attorney General’s Office did not lead to charges, either.
Connolly was arrested Friday, arraigned and released, pending prosecution in Granville Town Court.
The whereabouts of the motorcycle were unclear as of Monday. It was not known whether it had actually been sold.