Local law enforcement authorities executed a search warrant Thursday morning at the home of a Florence, New Jersey, couple accused of draining more than $400,000 from a GoFundMe account created for a homeless man, KYW-TV reported.
Kate McClure and her boyfriend, Mark D’Amico, were ordered to turn over all remaining cash from the campaign that was started for homeless veteran Johnny Bobbitt last year. The couple allegedly drained the funds after they deposited the money into their personal accounts.
A Pennsylvania judge on Wednesday ordered the couple to appear in court Monday to provide sworn testimony regarding the dispersion of the money. The lawyer for McClure and D'Amico indicated in court that they may refuse to testify.
What did authorities say?
Burlington County Prosecutor Scott A. Coffina issued a written statement about the execution of the search warrant.
"Due to the enormous public interest in this matter, I am confirming that a search warrant was executed early this morning by the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office and the Florence Township Police Department at the residence of Mark D'Amico and Katelyn McClure in connection with a criminal investigation into the Johnny Bobbitt matter. As of this time, there have been no charges filed. Further updates will be provided as circumstances warrant," Coffina said in the statement.
No other details were provided.
What happened during the search?
McClure, 28, and D'Amico, 39, stayed on the porch while investigators searched their home.
Investigators carried out bags of evidence and towed off a black BMW that may have been purchased with some of the GoFundMe funds, the Courier-Post reported.
It's not yet clear what police were searching for but a local reporter tweeted photos of the couple during the search.
What's the back story?
The case began as a civil lawsuit filed by Bobbitt's pro bono lawyers against the couple after they allegedly cut off his access to the money. He ended up back on the streets.
A detective and assistant prosecutor from the Burlington County's Prosecutor's Office sat in the back of the courtroom during the hearing on Wednesday, the Cherry Hill Courier-Post reported.
Bobbitt, who is a former U.S. Marine, has accused the couple of blowing through the cash to fund a lifestyle they couldn't afford, including the purchase of a BMW for McClure.
The GoFundMe campaign was started after Bobbitt used his last $20 to buy gas for McClure when she was stranded last Thanksgiving in Philadelphia. The campaign went viral and drew $402,706 from more than 14,000 donors who wanted to help Bobbitt buy a home and get his life together.
The couple claimed they had spent about half the money on Bobbitt, but stopped giving him cash because he was using drugs.
According to Christopher Fallon, Bobbitt's lawyer, his client is receiving treatment in a drug detox facility, The New York Post reported.