OLIVE BRANCH, Miss. — Dorothy Johnson and her husband danced their way into their sixth year of marriage with a memorable anniversary party in their backyard. However, there’s one part Johnson wishes she could forget.
“I had a cake lady supposed to be bringing my cake. Her name was Tam,” Johnson said. “She never did show.”
She’s talking about Divine Bakery and Sweetz, a company registered to Tamatha Briggs of Byhalia, Mississippi. Johnson says she’d bought cakes from Tam in the past through her Facebook business page called “Berriesby Tam.”
“My son was ordering, my nieces, everybody was ordering stuff from her,” she said.
She said Tam told her she was moving to Texas but would come back to Mississippi to complete her order. Johnson provided messages showing Tam confirmed she received her $100 deposit and then a $275 balance payment.
After she didn’t show up at the party, Johnson said it took days to reach the bakery owner.
“I even gave her two weeks to pay me back. She finally called me. She sent me a picture. I got a picture in my phone that said a spider bit her,” Johnson said.
In this message Johnson also provided, Tam said she’d be back in Mississippi on October 8. However, Johnson said the refund never made it, so she started warning others on social media.
That’s how Johnson met Angela Lamar.
“She said, ‘I’m so sorry, but she did me the same way,'” Johnson said.
It’s likely Lamar was the reason Tam planned to be back in Mississippi on October 8. That was the day Lamar was maid of honor in her sister’s wedding. She had paid $675 over CashApp for a cake.
“She’s my only sister, my baby sister,” Lamar said. “I knew she wanted three or four tiers.”
However, Lamar said Tam never showed up at the wedding. Her sister’s sweet send-off was filled with everything except a wedding cake.
“The coordinator called five to six times. I called. Everybody was calling and she wouldn’t answer the phone. To this day she hasn’t answered the phone for me,” Lamar said.
When the WREG Problem Solvers called, Tam did answer the phone. She gave her side of the story.
She said Lamar’s second CashApp payment never went through and promised to send evidence over email, but never sent anything or responded to multiple follow-up phone calls and messages.
Regarding Johnson, the bakery owner admitted she took payment for desserts she never delivered, but thought they’d agreed she could provide product another time.
“She said I could bring them later. That was the agreement,” Tam said over the phone.
Johnson said they never had any agreement. She had only been promised her money back multiple times.
The cases have now gotten the attention of the Better Business Bureau of the Mid-South.
“There’s enough there. We are concerned and we wanted to alert the public,” said the BBB’s Daniel Irwin.
He also highlighted the health and safety risks associated with home kitchens.
The Mississippi Department of Health says Divine Bakery and Sweetz’s owner never completed the process to obtain a food permit. As a result, it never inspected Divine Bakery & Sweetz.
“Just be really, really careful,” Irwin said. “Know the risks involved.”
“It’s really not about the money. It’s more so about her not being able to do anybody else like this, especially for such big events. These are events I can’t do over. I can’t do my sister’s wedding day over,” Lamar said.
Both women say they filed lawsuits to get their money back and the Problem Solvers asked the owner if she would give them a refund. We’ll keep you posted if it happens.