A home renovator based in Toms River faces a theft charge for allegedly taking thousands in payments to repair and raise a Superstorm-damaged house in Seaside Heights, but never completing the job.

Thomas Carlevale (Ocean Co. Prosecutor's Office)
Thomas Carlevale (Ocean Co. Prosecutor's Office)
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Thomas Carlevale, 29, is also charged with failure to register his business with the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, according to information from the office of Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato.

The homeowners, Mary and Nick Ditta, filed a report with county investigators Monday, claiming that they contracted Carlevale for the job, but it's been left incomplete..

It's been a considerable wait. The Dittas reportedly contracted in October 2014, and Carlevale delayed the job until May 2015, authorities said.

County investigators said that Carlevale accepted about $22,000 from the couple and spent about $4,500 on renovations before leaving the house damaged and undone. The checks were cashed and not deposited in bank accounts, authorities said.

Authorities also contend that Carlevale wasn't registered with the state as a home improvement contractor when he agreed to the work

Carlevale was apprehended at about 1 PM on January 6, during a police pullover on Washington Street in Toms River. He is charged with theft by failure to make required disposition and failure to register as a home improvement contractor.

His bail  was set at $50,000, with no option for release on payment of 10 percent.

Investigators are interested to know of any similar instances. Detective Brad Frank in the county's Special Investigations Unit can be reached at 732-929-2027, extension 3689.