EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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February 7, 2013

Bridal gown owners demand action against shop

Attorney General asked to return dresses to owners

HAVERHILL — Doug Julian peered into the front windows of Bride To Bride Boutique in Lafayette Square and could see some of the 29 wedding dresses he left there on consignment.

He said he has returned to the shop repeatedly to retrieve the dresses he and his fiance hoped would be sold, but on every visit he's met with locked doors. He could see the display case lights were on, and has been told by neighboring businesses that someone has been changing the displays — but still the dresses remain out of his reach.

He said he has been unable to contact the shop owner and now, along with other people whose dresses hang from racks in the locked shop, Julian is demanding that something be done to ensure his property is returned to him.

"I'm angry and frustrated. I've put a lot of work into this the last few months," said Julian, who lives in Boston. "It's a panic for me as it's a lot of money to lose and would be a huge loss to me. Either I'd like to get the product back or be paid. This has been going on for months and it's ridiculous."

Police said they spoke with several people who complained they placed their dresses on consignment at the Bride To Bride Boutique, but are now unable to get in touch with the shop owner.

"We have information that the shop owner left the state and that it's possible that she may be in Florida," police Deputy Chief Donald Thompson said.

Julian said he recently filed a report with Haverhill police and also filed a consumer complaint with the Massachusetts Attorney General's office.

"Now I'm trying to get in touch with the building owner to ask how they will protect our stuff," Julian said. "I do want the Attorney General to step in and make a demand to the property owner to open it (the boutique) at some point with the assistance of police, so people can get their stuff back."

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