Couple accused of stealing some of the $400,000 they raised for a homeless man through crowd funding are told to hand over the remaining funds and show proof of previous expenditure
A judge ordered Kate McClure and Mark D’Amico to handover remainder of raised funds
New Jersey couple raised $402,000 for homeless man Johnny Bobbitt last year but they withheld money from Bobbitt, 35, because he ‘was spending it all on drugs’
A judge has now ordered the couple to deposit the money in a third party account and show proof of where and how funds were disbursed
Johnny Bobbitt [left], has been fighting to get the $400,000 Katie McClure [center], and Mark D’Amico [right], reportedly raised for him through crowd funding
A couple accused of stealing some of the $400,000 the public raised for a homeless man have been told they must hand the money over.
Katie McClure and Mark D’Amico set up a GoFundMe page to raise cash for Johnny Bobbitt, 35, after the homeless man used his last $20 on gas for McClure.
Bobbitt’s selfless act gained worldwide attention and attracted hundreds of thousands of donations.
Still homeless: Johnny Bobbitt [left] seen with Mark D’Amico and Katie McClure [right] shortly after his ‘Good Deed’, last year held so much promise of redemption. The couple went on to raise $402,000 for homeless Bobbitt
The story begins when 35-year-old Bobbitt, although homeless, used his last $20 to buy McClure gas when she ran out last November. The couple set up a GoFundMe page to pay him back. But nine months on, the couple admitted just over $150,000 of the $400,000 raised remains.
The New Jersey couple have now handed all of the left over the funds to their attorney, who has placed the funds into an escrow account as the case continues.
The judge also ordered McClure and D’Amico to show where the money was spent.
The couple originally set out to raise $10,000 for Bobbitt but that target was quickly surpassed.
D’Amico and McClure claim they withheld most of the funds from Bobbitt because they said he was spending it all on drugs.
Mark D’Amico and Katie McClure seen during a tour of the Grand Canyon, ostensibly, not at the expense of Bobbitt, who remains homeless and addicted
To access the funds, the homeless veteran then filed a lawsuit to stop the couple from spending what remains of the money.
During an appearance on the Megyn Kelly Today show Monday, they explained that they had initially put the money in their own bank account temporarily because Bobbitt didn’t have one of his own – and had no ID or documentation to get one.
‘We worked to get him all those things. That’s takes so much time,’ McClure said.
The couple claim their recent expensive trips, McClure ‘s new BMW and D’Amico’s casino trips were financed with their salaries. He is a carpenter and she is a receptionist for the state department of transportation
Living large: D’Amico a carpenter and McClure who is receptionist at a state govt agency claim that they paid for their trips, her new BMW and his gambling junkets with their salaries
‘His dream – one of the first conversations I had with him was what he wanted,’ said D’Amico.
‘You can do anything you want in the world. You won the lottery, basically. I asked him what his dream was, he said to end up in Alaska in a travel trailer and living off the land fishing and hunting. I said, let’s do it.’
They even allowed him to keep the trailer on the McClure property while they sorted out his paperwork, and he’d used their home to shower, and would walk in whenever he liked.
Eventually, the documents came through and they set up a bank account for Bobbitt, but by this time, D’Amico said they’d started to notice some ‘red flags’.
Expense sheet for the Bobbitt Rehab Fund
A stay in a hotel
A camper they have now sold
An SUV which was not the one he wanted
Two cell phones
$30,000 for GoFundMe’s fee
$25,000 on cash he spent on drugs
Money he sent to his parents and gave to his brother
$150,000 being held back
The biggest warning sign came after Christmas, when the couple say they deposited $25,000 into Bobbitt’s account.
The money disappeared within 13 days – spent almost exclusively on drugs, D’Amico told Kelly.
‘We saw the pattern developing. Every dollar he ever touched was used for drugs,’ D’Amico said.
McClure said they tried to get Bobbitt to go to a rehab program but when he refused, they were worried to hand over the rest of the cash because they feared ‘he was going to do something foolish and end up right back where he was.’
D’Amico says that just $150,000 remains of the initial $400,000.
‘He spent a lot of money,’ he said of Bobbitt.
D’Amico explained that after GoFundMe took its cut, they were left with around $350,000 and that the $200,000 had been spent on his trailer, legal fees and court costs ,the hotel Bobbitt stayed in beforehand, an SUV, TV, laptop, two cell phones, and sending his parents money.
‘Also his brother came into the picture and was living opposite our property, who is also an addict,’ D’Amico said, adding that the rest, including the $25,000 he cycled through in 13 days, went on drugs.
Although D’Amico does admit he used $500 of the donations to gamble at a casino, he insists that Bobbitt was with him and it was with his full permission.
Johnny Bobbitt (center], flanked by Katie McClure and Mark D’Amico in New York
D’Amico and McClure say they are in the process of setting up an independent trust for the remaining funds for Bobbitt, insist they haven’t spent any of the funds themselves.
‘That’s what we’re in the process of doing.’
The pair who say they just wanted to do something nice for the homeless man who touched them with his kindness. It has boomeranged as they are now receiving death threats from people who assumed they’d stolen Bobbitt’s cash.
‘It’s so hard to deal with, because people are getting one side of the story, and receiving death threats and threats to burn my house down and threats against my family and everything like that is so hard to deal with when we know that we did a good thing,’ she said.
‘I still believe that we did a good thing, and I would do it all over again.I would do it all over again for him.’
Meanwhile, Bobbitt is back on the streets after the couple reportedly sold his trailer and asked him to leave McClure’s land, claiming he had stolen from them.
They’ve also sold the SUV but Bobbitt has not received a penny from the sales.
GoFundMe is now working with a team of lawyers who have agreed to work pro-bono for Bobbitt to determine whether the money has been mismanaged.
Bobbitt says he feels betrayed by the pair and thinks their greed got the better of them once the money started pouring in.
‘I think it might have been good intentions in the beginning, but with that amount of money, I think it became greed,’ he said.
Homeless advocates have enrolled him in two rehab programs to try to rid him of his opioid addiction. He spends $15 a day on drugs and is living beneath a bridge.
A spokesman for GoFundMe said the company was investigating the disagreement.