A New Jersey judge ordered a woman accused with her boyfriend of squandering more than $400,000 in donations intended for a homeless veteran who came to her aid last year to immediately turn over financial records and documentation.
Federal judge Paula Dow, a former New Jersey attorney general, appeared frustrated with both sides during a hearing Wednesday morning and ordered the records to be submitted to the court.
“We’re going to take this slower and stop grandstanding,” she said.
John Bobbitt accused Kate McClure and Mark D’Amico of misusing funds the couple raised online after Bobbitt gave them his last $20 when she ran out of gas on Interstate 95 in November.
McClure and D’Amico claim they gave Bobbitt some of the money raised through their GoFundMe campaign but he used it to buy drugs.
The fundraising campaign raised more than $400,000 from over 14,000 people.
However, Bobbitt’s attorney, Chris Fallon, accused the couple of using those donations to fund their own lifestyle, including taking lavish vacations and purchasing a BMW luxury car. On Tuesday, he said all the money was gone.
Ernest Badway, attorney for McClure and D'Amico, declined to comment on that accusation.
Bobbitt, McClure and D’Amico were all absent at Wednesday’s hearing but were each ordered to appear next week for depositions. Bobbitt must attend despite entering a 28-day drug recovery program, Dow said.
Last week, a judge ordered McClure and D'Amico to turn over the donation money. She said the couple must give the money to their defense lawyer, who was directed to place funds into an escrow account as the case continues. The judge also ordered McClure and D'Amico to provide a full accounting of the money they raised.
GoFundMe has not responded to a request for comment.