Katie Lynn Shellhorse Cedartown Georgia woman accused of lying about terminal cancer and collecting $15K in deceptive cancer donation drive. Family say money was spent on alcohol and marijuana.
A Georgia woman is accused of having swindled people out of thousands of dollars after claiming she had terminal cancer as she set about an illicit donation drive taking advantage of the community’s trust and concern.
Katie Lynn Shellhorse, a 22-year-old mom of two from Cedartown, was arrested on suspicion of theft by deception Tuesday after she collected at least $15,000, Polk Today reported.
Shellhorse was released on a $1,000 bond from the Polk County Jail after being incarcerated on the lone charge Tuesday evening.
She allegedly used Facebook to ask churches, friends and other community members for donations to pay for her medical care. As part of her rouse, the mom of two went so far as to shave off her hair multiple times to appear as if she was undergoing treatment, WSB-TV reported.
‘I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, she just had a baby and now she could potentially be dying, that’s so sad for her and her kids,” a high school classmate who donated to her fundraiser told Fox 5 Atlanta.
Woman admits lying about terminal cancer in since deleted social media post
In a since-deleted Facebook post, Shellhorse reportedly conceded to lying about the cancer diagnosis.
‘I have been lying for the past 10 months about having cancer. There was never any cancer or any treatment. I deeply apologize for the hurt I caused everyone like my husband, family, friends and even strangers who were very kind to me,’ she wrote, Polk Today reported.
Her family said they were also deceived and had come to believe Shellhorse was dying from cancer.
‘Our family has been devastated by this event. We had no foreknowledge of her plan to misguide and we will not defend it,’ they said in a statement to 11Alive.
‘We are deeply saddened that our community was deceived. We pray for all that were affected and believe that justice will be served.
Detectives are now encouraging reporting parties to contact law enforcement if they have documented proof of a donation.