LEDYARD, Conn. (WTNH) — Ledyard police say a local woman stole thousands of dollars solicited through a GoFundMe account. The money was intended to go to the family of a 4-year-old boy who drowned in a pool.
“That’s really sad I wouldn’t want anyone doing that for my children you know,” says Alexa Schwieterman of Ledyard.
34-year-old Bonni Ojeda is the boy’s aunt and lives at the home where he drowned in August. She faces five counts of larceny in the case.
“The amount pledged up to the page was approximately $3,800,” says Ledyard Police Chief John Rich. “The family alleged to have received about $1,500.”
It turns out the family members can’t be considered victims of theft because they aren’t out any money. It was never in their possession. It was only promised to them.
“The actual people according to the law who are the actual victims are the people who donated,” says Chief Rich.
As soon as Ledyard police got involved on September 5th the GoFundMe site shut down the donation page and police were able to contact some of the people who gave money thinking it would help pay for funeral expenses.
“It was a total of five donations that ranged between and a hundred dollars,” says Chief Rich.
If more victims are found Ojeda could face more charges.
“I don’t know anybody would do that that’s really rude,” says Schwieterman.
Police ruled the drowning was accidental and no foul play was involved. Ojeda has a court date set for January 19th in New London.
Her husband yelled out the front door of their home telling News 8 the truth would come out once they had their day in court.