CALL7 Undercover Cameras Find Appliances Altered

'The Landmark' Developer Denies Deceit

It's promised to be one of the premiere addresses in the Denver area, but the CALL7 Investigators discovered something hidden inside the high-end condominiums.

It was something hidden so well, most would never have known it was there until it was caught by CALL7 undercover cameras.

As a result of the CALL7 Investigation, GE conducted an internal investigation and found "employee involvement" and told 7NEWS, "appropriate disciplinary action has been taken."

"The community is about quality, it's about amenities, it's about doormen, 24-hour valets and swimming pools," a saleswoman for The Landmark told CALL7 Investigators.

The Landmark is a luxurious condominium project in Greenwood Village, just off Interstate 25 and Orchard Road. Prices range from about $350,000 to well over $1 million for a single unit and, according to the sales information, The Landmark will include top-of-the-line amenities such as grocery and dry-cleaning service to your door, a courtesy Range Rover, car washing, travel arrangements and a personal trainer for the fitness center.

The sales information also clearly states that the kitchens come standard with GE Monogram appliances. According to GE, it is the best the company has to offer.

With undercover cameras rolling at The Landmark, the salesperson showed CALL7 Investigators one of the models and said, "This is GE Monogram appliances, which is all stainless steel products. It's the highest end that you'll find, probably standard in a condo complex."

7NEWS hidden cameras showed the Monogram logo on the lower left corner of the "built-in" microwave.

The problem is, the microwave was not GE Monogram, but instead the much lower-priced GE Profile model.

Looking at it, however, a potential buyer would never know the difference because a Monogram logo was adhered over the Profile name.

Workers at The Landmark were given Monogram "badges" and installed them over the Profile name.

7NEWS hidden cameras revealed model numbers JE1590SH and PEB1590SM, which are GE Profile countertop microwave/convection ovens.

At The Landmark, the lower-end GE appliances were "built-in" using an install kit, above an actual Monogram oven.

The developer of the The Landmark, Zack Davidson, initially told CALL7 Investigator John Ferrugia that he knew nothing about the altered logos.

"I'd be happy to provide you guys with a list of all my appliances and validation that they are exactly what they are represented to be," said Davidson.

"So you don't know that people have changed these?" asked Ferrugia.

Davidson replied, "No I don't. I do not know that. I am not aware of that."

But, CALL7 Investigators obtained an internal e-mail Davidson had sent to an appliance company that sells GE products reading, "Have you resolved obtaining and applying the GE Monogram badges on the microwaves???"

Ferrugia showed the e-mail to Davidson who said, "I'm done talking right now. I've got to check the facts of what you've said. I'd be happy to look at the information you've given me here and get more information to understand what you're asserting, if you're asserting something. I don't have the facts in front of me. What I can tell you is this, when we started the project there were two very analogous GE appliances in the Monogram and Profile lines."

In a later phone conversation, Davidson said he was not trying to deceive anyone and believes he is providing a superior product. He said the Monogram microwave he intended to put in the condos was discontinued by GE. It was a one cubic foot built-in model with 800 watts cooking power. 7NEWS found it had sold for more than $1,100.

The only built-in Monogram oven available was much more than a microwave with more cooking power, 1.6 cubic foot capacity and cost hundreds more than the discontinued model.

Davidson chose to spend hundreds of dollars less for a Profile countertop model, with a built-in kit, 1.5 cubic foot capacity and 1,000 watts cooking power.

According to experts, Profile and Monogram are very different GE appliances.

"If you get a Monogram kitchen that's a really nice kitchen," said Gregg Colson, the vice president of marketing at Appliance World in Denver. His company sells both GE Monogram and Profile appliances.

Colson said, "The Monogram is definitely a step up."

"And you're talking about significantly more money?" asked Ferrugia.

"Very expensive, yeah," said Colson. "There's a performance factor that goes with it. I would perceive a home with a Monogram kitchen to certainly be more valuable than a home with a Profile kitchen."

Davidson said he did nothing wrong covering the Profile logo with a badge reading Monogram.

He told Ferrugia he upgraded his customers with more cooking power and included the Profile model numbers in sales contracts.

After learning of the CALL7 Investigation, Davidson sent a letter to buyers at The Landmark reading, in part, "GE apologized for their decision to eliminate the only Monogram option that was available to us and they made the decision to send us the GE Monogram 'badges' that are currently displayed on all microwaves in The Landmark because they determined that the new GE#PEB1590 was a superior product in every way..."

The spokesperson for GE told Ferrugia the company did not know anything about The Landmark project switching logos, did not authorize it and would never allow for product names to be altered. The spokesperson also said the company is investigating.

Representatives of The Landmark told 7NEWS the Monogram badges have now been removed from the Profile microwaves at the condo complex and new customers will see that the microwaves are of the Profile line.