US woman faces jail time after raising over $10,000 by lying that daughter had cancer, Latest World News - The New Paper

US woman faces jail time after raising over $10,000 by lying that daughter had cancer

A 41-year-old woman from the state of Ohio in the United States could face up to 18 months in jail and a fine if found guilty of deceiving donors about expenses incurred from her daughter’s medical condition.

According to documents from an Ohio Court, Pamela Reed was arrested on Jan 8 after she had allegedly claimed on Facebook that her seven-year-old daughter was diagnosed with leukaemia – even shaving her daughter’s head bald to give this impression – suffered from seizures and was blind in the right eye.

The documents, which referred to Reed’s daughter as AR, said that a Shenandoah Elementary School administrator had alerted the authorities on Jan 4 after the school performed a routine eye exam on the girl.

The school administrators’ suspicions about the authenticity of Reed’s claims about AR’s medical condition were heightened after the girl was found to have perfect vision.

It was also later confirmed that the document Reed submitted saying that AR was diagnosed with cancer was fraudulent.

During the investigations, officers from the Noble County Sheriff’s Office and Noble County Children’s Services said Reed had initially persisted with her claims.

“(Reed) first lied but then admitted that AR did not have cancer and (that) she posted those statements because she liked the support given as a result,” read the report.

“(Reed) admitted that she had shaved AR’S hair, and it was never because of cancer treatment.”

Investigators added that as a result of her alleged deception, Reed had received some US$8,000 (S$10,600) in donations from a local cancer charity.

They said that even AR’s older sister, aged 10, had also been led to believe by her mother that her younger sister was severely ill with cancer.

Reed was charged by a local judge with theft, by deception, a felony of the fourth degree according to Ohio State Law, with bail set at US$50,000.

In a joint statement, Sheriff Jason Mackie and Ms Misty Wells, the director of the Department of Job and Family Services, said: “We are extremely proud of the Children’s Services staff, along with law enforcement collaborative efforts, to quickly act for safety these children.

“Child abuse and neglect isn’t always cut and dry, cookie-cutter scenarios. If you, as a professional or as a member of our community, feel like something just isn’t quite right, don’t hesitate, make the report. The grit and devotion of this team is inspiring.”