Chip Nutty had planned to open in Mountain Island

by Andrew Batten

The owner of the Chip Nutty bakery, who has been accused of defrauding investors and not paying employees, then disappeared for weeks, had planned to open a store in Mountain Island.

Charles Rivers, the owner of Charlotte’s Chip Nutty, which had locations on Old Pineville Road and South Boulevard, disappeared on Dec. 15. Police began searching for him after he failed to show up for work. He was found Dec. 29 outside of the state, according to police spokesman Rosalyn Harrington. She wasn’t sure where he was located.

Rivers had posted a sign in the window of the former Ooey Gooey Bake Shop on Couloak Drive that said a Chip Nutty store was to open in mid-December.

Greg Hardee with KW Commercial real estate said Rivers had signed a lease agreement in December.

“We signed it but no money ever changed hands,” Hardee said. “When we went to collect he disappeared so we put it back on the market.”

The Chip Nutty sign has since been removed from the storefront.

Since Rivers’ disappearance, dozens of people have posted comments on Chip Nutty’s Facebook page, saying the Charlotte man failed to pay them due wages right before Christmas, leaving them unable to buy presents for their family.

Other people are encouraging anyone who might have lost money to press charges.

Rivers is not currently facing charges in Mecklenburg County and does not have an arrest record in the county.

Rivers incorporated Chip Nutty in February 2010.

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