Lawrence Marshall dealership shuts down

HEMPSTEAD, TX [SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

The employees with whom we spoke tell us they were told Wednesday the dealership is no more. The dealership is not answering phone calls, but those who work there say the company is closing.

We spoke with a clerk at Lawrence Marshall who told us the company employed about 200 people and now those workers are out of a job.

The problems may only be just beginning for those who had recent car deals with Lawrence Marshall. That same clerk says loans on trade-ins have not been paid by the dealership since December and that could lead to customers having two car notes -- one for the new car and the old note on the car they traded in.

On the Lawrence Marshall web site, a page appeared that says all of their services have been suspended

The closing of Lawrence Marshall can be traced back to the credit crunch. As car buyers are unable to get loans, dealerships are unable to make sales and are forced to close their doors.

Last year, nearly 1,000 car dealerships went under. This year, hundreds more may follow suit.

We made several calls to Lawrence Marshall Wednesday, but no one answered the phone at the dealership.

The Marshall dealership began in 1969. Years later, the dealership was purchased by Ray Childress, a former defensive lineman with the Houston Oilers. Childress remains the current owner and CEO.

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