Homeless man, couple who gained fame through GoFundMe campaign accused of fabricating story

Homeless man, couple who gained fame through GoFundMe campaign accused of fabricating story

Johnny Bobbitt stands with his would-be benefactors,  Kate McClure and Mark D’Amico, before their GoFundMe campaign turned into a saga of greed and deceit. (Photo: NBC News)

Moved by Bobbitt’s kind gesture, McClure and her boyfriend, Mark D’Amico, said they returned to Philadelphia a few days later to check on Bobbit and buy him food and clothing, according to local Philadelphia station WPVI-TV. The couple said they got to know the man and learned that he was a down-on-his-luck veteran. So they decided to launch a GoFundMe page, which they titled Paying It Forward, to raise money for a car, first and last month’s rent on an apartment, and four to six months’ worth of expenses for Bobbitt. McClure wrote, “[I] Truly believe that all Johnny needs is one little break.” They set a goal of $10,000, but earned $401,921 by the time Bobbitt made the call to cap the fundraising.  ‘ data-reactid=”24″>Moved by Bobbitt’s kind gesture, McClure and her boyfriend, Mark D’Amico, said they returned to Philadelphia a few days later to check on Bobbit and buy him food and clothing, according to local Philadelphia station WPVI-TV. The couple said they got to know the man and learned that he was a down-on-his-luck veteran. So they decided to launch a GoFundMe page, which they titled Paying It Forward, to raise money for a car, first and last month’s rent on an apartment, and four to six months’ worth of expenses for Bobbitt. McClure wrote, “[I] Truly believe that all Johnny needs is one little break.” They set a goal of $10,000, but earned $401,921 by the time Bobbitt made the call to cap the fundraising. 

To make matters worse, the couple allegedly used the bulk of the money to finance a lifestyle they couldn’t afford, paying for lavish vacations, shopping sprees, and a BMW — extravagances they flaunted all over social media. “(Bobbitt) tells me they had a Louis Vuitton bag and Chanel sunglasses, a new iPhone 10,” said Philadelphia lawyer Jacqueline Promislo, who was representing the man pro bono, to the New York Post.‘ data-reactid=”28″>To make matters worse, the couple allegedly used the bulk of the money to finance a lifestyle they couldn’t afford, paying for lavish vacations, shopping sprees, and a BMW — extravagances they flaunted all over social media. “(Bobbitt) tells me they had a Louis Vuitton bag and Chanel sunglasses, a new iPhone 10,” said Philadelphia lawyer Jacqueline Promislo, who was representing the man pro bono, to the New York Post.

In a statement to NBC News, representatives for the company said, “GoFundMe’s goal has always been to ensure Johnny gets support he deserves … We’re fulfilling that commitment today and we will continue to work with Johnny’s team to make sure he’s receiving all donated amounts.” Yahoo Lifestyle reached out to GoFundMe to confirm that the money was delivered to Bobbitt, and will update this story when we hear back.’ data-reactid=”30″>Then, GoFundMe stepped in and promised Bobbitt would receive the balance of the funds. In a statement to NBC News, representatives for the company said, “GoFundMe’s goal has always been to ensure Johnny gets support he deserves … We’re fulfilling that commitment today and we will continue to work with Johnny’s team to make sure he’s receiving all donated amounts.” Yahoo Lifestyle reached out to GoFundMe to confirm that the money was delivered to Bobbitt, and will update this story when we hear back.

conspiracy and theft by deceptionlater — sometime on Wednesday, according to NBC News.‘ data-reactid=”35″>Authorities are expected to announce charges against the three — including conspiracy and theft by deceptionlater — sometime on Wednesday, according to NBC News.

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