New sales job lands teen in trouble with the law

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Dallas Shepard, a 19-year-old with an approachable personality and good manners, had just landed a new job selling digital TV services door-to-door; he was excited about getting the new gig.

But three days into the new position, Shepard was surprised when he and a coworker received a citation from police for not having the proper work permits.

"He [the officer] basically explained to me that it's illegal to be out there without a permit to solicit and that since we didn't have this permit, that he was going to have to issue a citation," Shepard said.

Shepard's employer, Valdantis, Inc., located at 89th and Stateline, is listed with the Kansas Secretary of State's office as a marketing and sales consulting company.

The owner, Aaron Gedminas, told Call for Action, employees sent to do door-to-door sales are trained to file for proper permits within the city they are working before they begin to sell.

"I can't get their permits," Gedminas said.

He said many communities require photo ID from the workers applying to sell in their city. Shepard said he was not told to get the permits and neither was his coworker who also received a citation.

After getting the tickets, Shepard said he spoke to a supervisor who told him to keep working.

"I felt a little uncomfortable doing that because I just got told by a police officer not to be there without a permit," he said.

Shepard said the company owner told him that he would take care of the citation.

Bothered by what happened, Shepard quit days later.  Several weeks after the incident, Shepard received notice in the mail from the city of Derby that he had "either disregarded or forgotten" the citation.

"I tried to make numerous phone calls to Aaron. The first time I talked to him was the same night I received that letter. He wasn't helpful," Shepard said.

When contacted by Call for Action, Gedminas had a different story, saying he tried to contact Shepard to pay the ticket and fine.

"Dallas never returned my calls," Gedminas said.

Gedminas agreed to settle up with Shepard, paying him $423 to cover the court costs and Shepard's expense of driving back to Derby for a court hearing.

Gedminas also said he suspended the employee who told Shepard to continue working after getting the ticket for one week. 

Now, Shepard has a new job and is relieved to have this behind him.

"I wanted to thank you for your time and also 41 Action News for doing this great service," Shepard said.  "Without you guys, I wouldn't have been able to make it this far."

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