Rochester Hills Splash Pad shooting: Beware of phony GoFundMes

In the day after gun violence shook Rochester Hills where nine people were shot by an assailant on a Saturday, fake GoFundMe accounts purporting to be from the victims spread online.

The Oakland County Sheriff's Office is asking anyone hoping to donate to the victims be wary of the phony charity drives, calling them "bottom-feeding scumbags" that are "preying off this tragedy."

As of Monday, the sheriff's office has confirmed two GoFundMe drives, including one tied to a family that had two kids and a parent injured in the shooting. That online resource can be found here. It was set up by Tiffany, who said she is closely related to three of the victims. 

"Right now their father is trying to navigate through life and being by their sides. The community has been amazing, along with the nurses and doctors who are caring for them," the description on the gofundme reads.

The other GoFundMe was set up by Noel Wakula, who said they were a close friend of another couple that had been victimized. The parents had shielded their kids, protecting them while they were stuck. That online resource can be found here

No other gofundmes claiming to be raising money for the victims has been confirmed.

"I encourage anyone interested in donating to check with the Sheriff’s Office first. If there are legitimate sites, we will let the public know," Sheriff Michael Bouchard said over the weekend.

According to a spokesperson with GoFundMe, the website has a zero tolerance policy for the misuse of the platform. 

By Sunday, they had removed one fundraiser any any funds that had donated had been returned to those that had sent them. 

"We will cooperate with law enforcement investigations of those accused of wrongdoing. The GoFundMe Giving Guarantee protects donors by guaranteeing a full refund in the rare case something isn’t right," it said in a statement.


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Mayor Bryan Barnett wanted to project a confident persona as the leader of city in the aftermath of the shooting. But when he got to the splash pad, instead he started crying.