GoFundMe or GoScamMe?


Jefrany D'catry

The GoFundMe campaign set up by Kate McClure for Johnny Bobbitt.

Jefrany D'catry, Staff Writer

Katelyn McClure first met Johnny Bobbitt Jr., a homeless veteran, last fall. She had run out of gas on Interstate 95 in Philadelphia and Bobbit assisted by giving her his last twenty dollar bill. As a way to repay him, she and her boyfriend Mark D’Amico started a GoFundMe campaign, receiving donations from about 14,000 people and raising a little over $400,000.

The encounter began amicably, abruptly shifting in nature when Bobbitt suspected the couple had taken a portion of the donations received to spend on luxuries. In August, a lawsuit was filed by Bobbit in an attempt to ensure he receives the remainder of the funds. It is believed that he received approximately $75,000 of the over $400,000 with McClure and D’Amico withholding the rest of the money.

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Even though he has a history of drug addiction I believe people can change. It’s not right for the couple to not give him all the funds they raised for him.”

— junior Emma Garcia

On Monday, Mark D’Amico was arrested for a traffic warrant and bailed out the next day. There is an ongoing investigation regarding these allegations against the couple. They have denied any wrongdoing, claiming they were reluctant to hand over the entirety of the funds in order to keep Bobbitt from spending it on drugs. Judge Paula Dow requested they give in the rest of the funds, but supposedly there was none left, so a search warrant was approved.

“I don’t think it’s right when, first of all he served for our country and secondly, they were the ones who started the GoFundMe page and then they don’t give all they earned on it. I think they should’ve given him all the money and not use it for their own pleasure,” sophomore Jessica Da Silva said.

According to Ernest Badway, the couple’s previous attorney, it is speculated that either one or both will eventually be indicted.  He has stated that his firm will no longer be taking part in the case and it is unknown if they’ll represent them in the future.  Badway also mentions the couples’ inability to defend themselves since their financial records were confiscated and suggested a  stay in the civil suit which was authorized by judge Paula Dow  until Dec. 7. As of right now, no official charges have been made against McClure and D’Amico.

As a result of this scandal, GoFundMe has joined the ongoing investigation. Bobbitt’s legal team set up a bank account for him in which GoFundMe have added $20,000 to. They have released a statement in which they affirm that he will receive the rest of the money.