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GoFundMe Scammer Who Made Up Story About Homeless Man Gets A Year Of Federal Prison

Katelyn McClure — along with her boyfriend Mark D’Amico — created a fake story on GoFundMe, claiming that homeless veteran Johnny Bobbitt spent his last $20 dollars to help her after she got stranded on the side of a highway.

By Gina Tron
Kate Mcclure Mark Damico Johnny Bobbitt Ap

A New Jersey woman who helped create a GoFundMe scam based on a false feel-good tale about a homeless man rescuing her from the side of a highway will be spending time in federal prison for the fake story.

Katelyn McClure, 32, was sentenced to one year and a day of federal prison in a Camden court on Thursday, a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey announced. She was also ordered to pay restitution and to serve three years of supervised release for the 2017 scheme.

The Bordentown woman had pleaded guilty to second-degree theft by deception in 2019.

McClure and her boyfriend Mark D’Amico, 43, had created a campaign on GoFundMe along with homeless veteran Johnny Bobbitt, 39, which falsely claimed that she was rescued by him. 

McClure and D’Amico posted a story that McClure was driving home from Philadelphia on Interstate 95 and ran out of gas,” the press release states. “Bobbitt acted as a ‘good Samaritan' and rescued McClure by using his last $20 to buy gasoline for her. The website stated that funds were being solicited to get Bobbitt off the streets and provide him with living expenses, setting a goal of $10,000.”

News outlets picked up on the seemingly heartwarming story, causing it to go viral, and they raised more than $400,000.

“In reality, McClure never ran out of gas and Bobbitt never spent his last $20 for her,” the press release states. “D’Amico and McClure allegedly conspired to create the false story to obtain money from donors.”

Despite claiming they wanted to pay it forward to the homeless man, the man claimed the couple ripped him off. The scheme began to unravel after Bobbitt sued the couple for allegedly not giving him his share of the money in 2018. He pleaded guilty in 2019 and was ordered to seek drug treatment. He is awaiting sentencing.

D’Amico, the mastermind behind the scam, accepted a plea deal in 2019 for the same charges, agreeing to a five-year jail sentence, the New York Post reported. Previously, McClure accused D’Amico of forcing her to lie on television during one of the many interviews they participated in.

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