Following the devastating murder of 74-year-old Robert Godwin in Cleveland, Ohio, the city’s police chief Calvin Williams warned those wanting to donate funds to the family through the crowdfunding platform GoFundMe to be careful when it comes to scams. The platform reached out to confirm which campaign is legitimate.
“It’s not uncommon for someone to create a GoFundMe to help another individual after a news report. We have spoken with the GoFundMe campaign organizer and members of the family. We’ll guarantee the money will be deposited directly into the family’s bank account,” GoFundMe commented to Cleveland-based news service WEWS about the verified account, https://www.gofundme.com/help-for-cleveland-victim-family. “As with any event, there may be multiple people who want to help. With regard to additional GoFundMes, we are directing everyone to the campaign above. Regardless, all funds raised for the Godwins will be transferred directly to the family. It’s important to remember that our platform is backed by the GoFundMe Guarantee, which means funds are guaranteed to go to the right place.”
Since launching yesterday, the campaign has raised over $54,125 from over 2,486 people to help the Godwin family. When in doubt of the legitimacy of GoFundMe campaigns, reach out to the platform or check out GoFraudMe, which indicated at least 35 false campaigns were initiated.
Contrary to GoFundMe’s statement, GoFraudMe indicated as of 17 April, Godwin’s daughter, Tonya Godwin-Baines, said her family has not created a GoFundMe account for her late father. She also said no one has been authorized to create such account. Concerned donors, waiting may be the best option here.
As reported earlier, on Easter Sunday, 74-year-old Godwin was allegedly shot to death by Steve Stephens, who broadcasted the killing on Facebook Live. Godwin was walking down the street in Cleveland when Stephens approached him and shot him. Stephens then claimed that he had killed 13 others, but the Cleveland police have yet to find other victims. The suspect has not yet been caught and could be in Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, or Michigan. A $50,000 reward is being offered for information that will aid in apprehending Stevens.
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