GoFundMe is an online website that helps individuals collect donations for various causes. The popular social media site has exploded in popularity. You can expect to see a GoFundMe page pop up anytime a tragic news story goes viral. This held true when the Pike County High School football team suffered a devastating tragedy last September.
During a football game, one of the school’s players, Dylan Thomas, fell unconscious on the field. He was rushed to the hospital, and the game was never resumed. Thomas underwent surgeries when doctors discovered his brain was swelling, but he passed away a short time later. The community was devastated by the incident.
Now, police have learned that one man from Georgia attempted to take advantage of the situation by creating a fake GoFundMe account for the family of the late Dylan Thomas. Several good-hearted citizens gave money to the fund thinking they were sending money to the victim’s family. GoFundMe recognized an issue and when the page’s creator attempted to transfer all donations to a personal bank account. The website immediately flagged the transaction as fraudulent and contacted the local authorities. The suspect was not able to obtain any of the funds.
Police utilized the suspect’s banking information and his computer’s IP address, which were both obtained from GoFundMe, to track down the culprit. Justus Hughley, a 22-year-old resident of Upson County, was apprehended for attempting to fraudulently obtain the donations. He is being charged with computer theft, and he is being held at the Pike County Jail without bond.