Glenville taxidermist denies claims he is running fraudulent business

A Glenville man accused of running a fraudulent taxidermy business has been arrested. However, the business owner denies the allegations.

Joseph Russell was charged with two counts of scheme to defraud, which is a Class E felony.

Russell didn’t just deny the allegations – he told NewsChannel 13 he runs a legitimate business.

His business is called Droptine Custom Taxidermy. He says he has been in business for two years. He claims he has several satisfied customers.

However, not everyone agrees – including Kyle Ellis – who shot his first buck in 2020. It was a proud moment for him, so he wanted to have it mounted.

Ellis contacted Russell. Ellis was given an estimate of $600. He agreed to pay 50% up front. That is $300.

Ellis was told it would take about 12 to 14 months for him to get the finished product back.

Ellis says he received some items such as a raccoon skull, the front hooves of a deer, along with the tail, along with a T-shirt.

However, the main thing he did not receive was the deer head. Ellis says his number was blocked. He adds he was never able to get a hold of Russell until Thursday. Even though Ellis lost the money, he says he is more upset that he doesn’t have the memories.

NewsChannel 13 spoke to Russell over the phone. He denies all the allegations.

“I’m 100% running a legitimate business with many happy customers, including law enforcement officers as customers,” said Russell.

NewsChannel 13 asked him were customers able to get their products returned?

“As far as someone wanting their materials back, I’ve had customers who wanted their materials back, and I have given them their materials back.”

Glenville Police say to call them if you were a victim of the scheme.

Russell was given an appearance ticket, processed and released.