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Homeless Man Who Conspired With Couple In 400K GoFundMe Scam Just Received His Sentence

CBS Philly/YouTube

Johnny Bobbitt Jr., a homeless veteran, pled guilty to conspiracy to commit theft by deception in New Jersey State court. He was caught helping a New Jersey couple swindle people out of over $400,000 via the crowdfunding app GoFundMe.

Bobbitt Jr., 36, assisted Kate McClure and Mark D’Amico in creating a sob story in which Bobbitt Jr. voluntarily purchased gas for McClure after her car ran out of fuel.

McClure wrote in the original viral post:

“I repaid him for the gas, gave him a jacket, gloves, a hat, and warm socks, and I give him a few dollars every time I see him.”

Things got weird when Bobbitt filed a lawsuit last August against the couple for withholding funds from the campaign.

The public feud led to a deeper investigation, in which authorities uncovered financial trouble in McClure and D’Amico’s past, leading them to concoct the scheme with Bobbitt, Jr. to solve all three of their financial problems.

People using a homeless veteran for their own gain.

Bobbitt Jr., as a part of the scam, was sentenced to five years of probation and a short stay in an inpatient rehabilitation center.

From here, he is expected to fully cooperate in the prosecution of D’Amico and McClure.

“Mr. Bobbitt was an instrumental part of the fraudulent campaign; indeed he was the face of it,” Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina said in a statement, according to NBC News.

“He admittedly promoted and perpetuated the false narrative that he had given his last $20 to his co-conspirator Kate McClure when she had run out of gas on the side of the highway, with the intent to manipulate the goodwill of others to obtain money for himself.”

GoFundMe’s CEO, Rob Solomon, said the company has implemented safeguards in cases like this where the money may not be going to the people who set up the account.

“We wouldn’t let the money leave the building until we could figure out how to get the flow of funds to the beneficiary.”

GoFundMe has since refunded users’ donations.


Written by Mike Walsh

Mike is a writer, dancer, actor, and singer who recently graduated with his MFA from Columbia University. Mike's daily ambitions are to meet new dogs and make new puns on a daily basis. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @mikerowavables.