LONDONDERRY — A Londonderry woman is accused of theft for allegedly keeping more than $5,000 in a GoFundMe campaign she created to help with her mother’s medical expenses.
Brittany Bonvie, 29, was indicted by a Rockingham County grand jury last month on a felony charge of theft by misapplication of property.
According to the indictment, Bonvie set up the page on GoFundMe.com and managed the account to benefit her mother, who was undergoing medical treatment after a brain aneurysm.
The indictment alleges she “kept the money as her own without delivering it” to her mother.
Bonvie also faces a misdemeanor theft charge in Derry Circuit Court. She has pleaded not guilty to that charge and waived Friday’s arraignment on the felony charge in Rockingham County Superior Court.
“It’s unfortunate that there can be people out there who take advantage of the generosity of those willing to give. It’s something that we see happening more and more often,” Deputy County Attorney Jennifer Haggar said last week.
Bonvie allegedly kept the donated money from the “Help Bring Celia Home” campaign established in 2017.
According to an article published by Wicked Local Cambridge in Massachusetts on April 5, 2017, the online fundraiser was created after Celia DeFeudis Bonvie suffered a brain aneurysm on March 12, 2017, while she was in Florida.
The article reported that the fund had a goal of raising $50,000 to help with the cost of a medical helicopter to bring Bonvie’s mother back to Boston because insurance wouldn’t pay for the flight.
“All donations will go toward the med-flight and all necessary care going forward to give my mother the beautiful life and future that she well deserves,” the fundraising campaign said at the time, according to Wicked Local Cambridge.
Haggar said the total amount of money raised was just over $5,000.
The indictment alleges the theft occurred between May 24 and June 1, 2017.
Emily Jessep, Bonvie’s public defender, declined to comment on the charges last week.
GoFundMe.com is one of the largest online fundraising platforms.
According to its website, fraudulent campaigns make up less than one-tenth of 1% of all of its campaigns, which can be created by anyone for a variety of reasons.