St. Pete pool contractor pleads guilty to unlicensed contracting, blames his wife

Better Call Behnken

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Steve Fortenbery of Pinellas Marcite Finishers pleaded guilty to unlicensed contracting and agreed to pay $40,000 in restitution to two customers.

He faces nine years of probation. Even so, Fortenbery tells Investigative Reporter Shannon Behnken that he didn’t do anything wrong. He blames his wife for “ruining” his business.

“She wanted to run the business, you know what I mean? I had the business 15 years before I met her and it was fine,” Steve Fortenbery said. “Let’s just put it this way, she took it over and you see what happened.”

Fortenbery ran Pinelleas Marcite Finishers with his wife, Sue. In recent years, she held the license. But she let it lapse. In addition, investigators with the State Attorney’s Office, claim the pair worked outside of the scope of their license.

Customer after customer turned to Better Call Behnken, out tens of thousands, and with unfinished pools full of green gunk.

Steve was charged in two cases. His wife faces charges in multiple cases dating back to 2016. She has been in jail since July, bond revoked.

The state attorney’s office says they will stay on Fortenbery to make sure he follows through with this restitution. The remaining charges against his wife are pending. She has a hearing planned for later this month.


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