An Ohio woman has been charged with felony theft after police say she posed as a terminal cancer patient to dupe donors into giving her thousands of dollars.
"Mindy Taylor convinced friends and her own husband and mother that she was dying of cancer. The problem is, she wasn't. It was all a lie." (Via Fox News)
According to The Columbus Dispatch, the 35-year-old mother claimed she was suffering from cancer of the small intestine, lupus and heart disease and was undergoing intense chemotherapy.
After hearing Taylor's story, a group of donors set up a YouCaring.com page to help raise money for her treatments. The page, called "Mindy's Army," raised more than $13,000.
And she reportedly got more than $7,000 in other donations from a spaghetti dinner fundraiser her mother put together in her hometown. (Via WBNS)
Taylor even kept a blog on CaringBridge.com that appeared to chronicle her struggles. A recent post read: "For those of you who don't know, last week was really hard for me. I pushed myself a little too much (shocking I know)…"
But it wasn't long before investigators caught wind of what they say was a scam.
WSYX reports police got an anonymous tip that Taylor had scammed donors out of more than $20,000 and was allegedly using the money for personal expenses. She was arrested and charged.
Taylor herself told WBNS she really did believe she had cancer and says she started returning the donations as soon as she figured out that she didn't have the disease. "I'll take the onus for whatever they want me to do. I'll do it. I'm not a bad person. ... I do want to clear my name."
But a Ross County prosecutor told The Columbus Dispatch he believes otherwise. "I think she's a hypochondriac and that she enjoyed the attention. Even now. Negative attention is still attention, right?"
Taylor is expected back in court June 16.