Convicted polygamist faces new fraud charges

Dennis Gould's mug shot.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A polygamist exposed by Target 8 nearly a decade ago is now facing trial, accused of ripping off banks in a car dealership scam.

At a hearing in Kent County Circuit Court Tuesday, it was decided Dennis Gould Jr. would stand trial on charges of false pretenses between $20,000 and $50,000.

The charges stem from an scam he allegedly pulled while working at AA Auto Sales on S. Division Avenue in Kentwood. According to court documents, police allege he and the dealership’s finance manager, Christopher Martin, made up fake pay stubs for low-income buyers, allowing them to qualify for car loans. Lake Trust Credit Union wrote $55,340 worth of those loans.

Christopher Martin's mug shot from the Kent County Correctional Facility.
(Christopher Martin’s mug shot from the Kent County Correctional Facility.)

Gould is charged as a fourth-time habitual offender. That designation increases his maximum sentence from 15 years in prison to up to life in prison if he is convicted.

At the time of his arrest, Gould was working at a different car dealership. He is not accused of any wrongdoing at that dealership. Target 8 has been told he no longer works there.

Gould is now married. However, as Target 8 found in 2006, he has a history of getting close to women and getting them to give him money and extravagant gifts before taking off, leaving them with a mountain of debt.

He was convicted of polygamy in 2006 after marrying a West Michigan woman while still being married to another woman. Then, after getting out of prison, Target 8 was told in 2011, Gould continued seeing several women at the same time, convincing them to give him cars and money before moving on.

Gould has a history of various cons and frauds in both Oklahoma and Michigan and has spent a significant amount of time behind bars across Michigan.

Martin, the finance manager, faces the same charges as Gould. He is set to stand trial later this month.

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