A couple from Philadelphia could be facing indictments after it was revealed they kept money from an online fundraiser aimed at helping a homeless veteran.
According to a report from Faithwire, Mark D’Amico and Katelyn McClure have been accused of spending hundreds of thousands of dollars promised to the homeless vet, Johnny Bobbitt.
McClure started the fundraiser last year after the vet gave her the last $20 he owned so that she could afford to get some gasoline. The tremendously kind gesture was posted online alongside the fundraiser in the vet’s name.
As Faithwire reports, the vet’s story went viral and McClure raised over $400,000.
But, she and D’Amico spent most of the money and only gave the vet less than a quarter of the funds.
From the report:
Bobbitt’s lawyer told the press that all his client’s money had been spent.
“There is no money left,” Bobbitt’s attorney, Christopher C. Fallon Jr., told NJ.com, noting that his client was “completely devastated” by the whole thing. Bobbitt reportedly received around $75,000, but is still owed approximately $300,000.
Now, the attorney representing D’Amico and McClure has told a Burlington County Judge that his firm may well step down from representing the couple, due to the fact they are likely to be indicted in the case.
“Since it is expected that one or both of the Defendants will likely be indicted, my firm and I will no longer be able to continue our representation of them in this matter,” the couple’s attorney, Ernest Badway, submitted in a motion filed Friday in Burlington County Superior Court, according to PEOPLE. “(However, we are not seeking that relief at this time, we merely wanted to make the Court aware of the potential future development.)”
Badway also noted that the couple was “unable to defend themselves or respond in any meaningful way” as to the whereabouts of the funds because their financial and business records have been seized by prosecutors.
According to the report, the couple went on shopping sprees and spent the money as soon as they got it.
A member of the veteran’s legal team, Jacqueline Promislo, said the couple purchased a Louis Vuitton handbag, Chanel sunglasses, and the new iPhone 10.
Fox News reports the heartwarming story turned into a disaster over where and how the money was spent:
Note: The author of this article has included commentary that expresses an opinion and analysis of the facts.
Chris Fallon, Bobbitt’s attorney, earlier said he had gotten about $75,000 of the cash. But Badway has said Bobbitt got about $200,000.
GoFundMe announced last week that it will ensure Bobbitt gets the full amount he is owed, whether or not the civil suit recovers any money, NJ.com reported.
D’Amico has said Bobbitt spent $25,000 in less than two weeks last year on drugs as well as paying for overdue legal bills and sending money to family. Bobbitt’s attorney said last week Bobbitt was entering a residential program for drug treatment.
The couple also bought Bobbitt a camper with some of the cash and parked it on land McClure’s family owns in New Jersey. But Bobbitt became homeless again after D’Amico reportedly told him in June he had to leave.