Was Touching Story of Helpful Homeless Man a Scam?

Johnny Bobbitt to face charges along with NJ couple, NBC Philadelphia reports
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 15, 2018 6:14 AM CST
Updated Nov 15, 2018 6:35 AM CST
Was Touching Story of Helpful Homeless Man a Scam?
Johnny Bobbitt Jr. is photographed on Aug. 15, 2018.   (David Swanson /The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP, File)

It’s not only the founders of a disputed GoFundMe campaign that raised $400,000 for a homeless man who find themselves in hot water. NBC Philadelphia reports Kate McClure, Mark D'Amico, and Johnny Bobbitt will face charges of conspiracy and theft by deception for allegedly concocting a false story to benefit themselves. Believing they were creating a better life for Bobbitt, said to have given McClure his last $20 to buy gas when she became stranded on a Philadelphia highway, 14,000 people donated more than $400,000 to the campaign last year. Temporarily set up in a trailer on property owned by McClure’s family, Bobbitt went on to sue, claiming McClure and D’Amico were using the fund as their "personal piggy bank."

Police raided the couple's Florence, NJ, home in September, seizing cash, jewelry, financial statements, and a new BMW, though Bobbitt's lawyer said the donated funds were gone. Citing a source familiar with the case, NBC reports McClure and D'Amico turned themselves in Wednesday to Burlington County prosecutors, who believe the three deliberately prevented campaign donors from gaining information "that would affect their judgment about solicited contribution to that fundraising effort." It's not clear if Bobbitt is also in custody. Per WVPI, prosecutors are to announce new developments in the case at 2pm local time Thursday. (GoFundMe previously promised to give Bobbitt the full amount he was due.)

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