Homeless 'good Samaritan' gets probation in GoFundMe scam

The homeless veteran who admitted to conspiring with a New Jersey couple in a GoFundMe scam that raised more than $400,000 was sentenced Friday to five years' probation.

News 12 Staff

Apr 12, 2019, 4:55 PM

Updated 1,891 days ago

Share:

 
MOUNT HOLLY, N.J. (AP) - The homeless veteran who admitted to conspiring with a New Jersey couple in a GoFundMe scam that raised more than $400,000 was sentenced Friday to five years' probation.
 
Johnny Bobbitt pleaded guilty last month in state court to conspiracy to commit theft by deception. Conditions of his sentence include inpatient drug treatment and cooperation with prosecutors against his co-defendants. If he violates those conditions, he will be sentenced to five years in prison with no possibility of parole for at least 18 months.
 
Bobbitt made no statement in court.
 
Prosecutors contend Bobbitt, Katelyn McClure and McClure's then-boyfriend, Mark D'Amico, made up a story in 2017 about Bobbitt giving $20 to help McClure when her car ran out of gas in Philadelphia.
 
The trio gained widespread recognition, and more than 14,000 donors contributed through GoFundMe, ostensibly to help Bobbitt. But it was all a scam, Burlington County prosecutors said, intended to enrich the three co-conspirators.
 
GoFundMe has said it refunded the donations.
 
Authorities began investigating last year after Bobbitt sued the couple for allegedly not giving him the money.
 
The couple claimed the cash would be donated to Bobbitt, but New Jersey authorities said the three split the money and spent lavishly, including on a BMW, designer bags, and trips to Las Vegas and elsewhere.
 
In addition to his state plea, Bobbitt pleaded guilty last month to a federal money laundering conspiracy charge. McClure pleaded guilty to one federal count of wire fraud conspiracy. No sentencing date has been set for either person on those federal charges.
 
D'Amico doesn't face any federal charges. He and McClure were charged last fall in state court with theft and conspiracy but have yet to be indicted by a grand jury.
 
D'Amico has denied wrongdoing.


More from News 12
1:37
Sinkhole rips through Hoboken waterfront walkway

Sinkhole rips through Hoboken waterfront walkway

1:47
Father’s Day stunner: Temperatures in the 70s with sun and some clouds

Father’s Day stunner: Temperatures in the 70s with sun and some clouds

1:00
Morristown records building showcases artworks by Black and Afro-Latina artists

Morristown records building showcases artworks by Black and Afro-Latina artists

0:20
EF-0 landspout tornado confirmed in Lawrence Township, NWS says

EF-0 landspout tornado confirmed in Lawrence Township, NWS says

1:57
‘Unity in the community.’ Juneteenth Festival celebrated along Bergen Street in Newark

‘Unity in the community.’ Juneteenth Festival celebrated along Bergen Street in Newark

0:38
Stafford police: Shoplifting suspect found with deer inside bag, crack cocaine at ShopRite

Stafford police: Shoplifting suspect found with deer inside bag, crack cocaine at ShopRite

Is your dad awesome? New Jersey tell us why your dad rocks!

Is your dad awesome? New Jersey tell us why your dad rocks!

0:26
Authorities: Paramus man obtained COVID-19 relief loans for business that closed before pandemic

Authorities: Paramus man obtained COVID-19 relief loans for business that closed before pandemic

2:04
Kevin Jonas undergoes surgery to remove common skin cancer; urges fans to get checked

Kevin Jonas undergoes surgery to remove common skin cancer; urges fans to get checked

1:43
Severe thunderstorms on Friday cause damage across New Jersey

Severe thunderstorms on Friday cause damage across New Jersey

1:02
Police: Armed suspect barricaded at Woodbridge gas station

Police: Armed suspect barricaded at Woodbridge gas station

0:53
New Jersey will soon see a stretch of 90-degree days. Here’s how to stay safe

New Jersey will soon see a stretch of 90-degree days. Here’s how to stay safe

0:38
Jersey Proud: Battleship New Jersey comes to Paulsboro this weekend before heading back to Camden

Jersey Proud: Battleship New Jersey comes to Paulsboro this weekend before heading back to Camden

2:01
Police in New Jersey say burglars are using Wi-Fi jammers to target homes. Here's what you need to know.

Police in New Jersey say burglars are using Wi-Fi jammers to target homes. Here's what you need to know.

1:05
Wyckoff native Kevin Jonas diagnosed with skin cancer

Wyckoff native Kevin Jonas diagnosed with skin cancer

0:31
NJ attorney general: Identities of officers, suspect in Woodbridge shootout released

NJ attorney general: Identities of officers, suspect in Woodbridge shootout released

0:24
Pulaski Skyway to close in both directions this weekend

Pulaski Skyway to close in both directions this weekend

1:13
Local veterans receive donated cars on Flag Day

Local veterans receive donated cars on Flag Day

2:13
Boating expert offers tips on how to stay safe on the water this summer

Boating expert offers tips on how to stay safe on the water this summer

1:52
Water service restored to Newark apartment buildings after days without service

Water service restored to Newark apartment buildings after days without service