The fundraising platform GoFundMe recently removed all campaigns created for an elderly rancher who is currently being held on $1 million bond and charged with murder of a migrant on his border property in Arizona, Fox News Digital reported.
Multiple fundraising campaigns were set up for 73-year-old George Alan Kelly, who was arrested for allegedly shooting and killing a migrant allegedly trespassing on his ranch on January 30.
A spokesperson for GoFundMe confirmed to the news outlet that the campaigns were removed from the platform for violating terms of service.
"GoFundMe's Terms of Service explicitly prohibit campaigns that raise money to cover the legal defense of anyone formally charged with an alleged violent crime. Consistent with this long-standing policy, any fundraising campaigns for the legal defense of someone charged with murder are removed from our platform," GoFundMe told Fox News Digital. "Donors who contributed to the fundraising campaigns for George Alan Kelly's legal expenses have been fully refunded."
Another fundraiser, set up by Shannon Pritchard, on the Christian crowdfunding platform GiveSendGo remains active.
"Neighbors say that he had been having difficulty keeping invaders out and say that Mr. Kelly would have acted in good faith," Pritchard stated. "It is a tragedy that a simple farmer, who should be protected by the government, has been abandoned and had to defend himself."
Pritchard argued that "anyone can see" that holding the farmer on $1 million bail is "purely political."
A spokesperson for GiveSendGo told Fox News Digital, "This is exactly why GiveSendGo exists. To allow people to have a voice and gain support in times of need. At this time [we] do not know any more than what is being shared on the news, but we do know that in our country a legal defense is not just for the wealthy. We will continue to allow the raising of funds for legal defense on GiveSendGo, as the presumption of innocent until proven guilty is a bedrock to our Justice system."
"We understand we are not the judge and jury; we will not take down campaigns based on own biases," the spokesperson added. "We will be praying for all involved."
Kelly was charged with first-degree murder following the shooting death of 48-year-old Gabriel Cuen-Butimea on Kelly's cattle ranch near the U.S.-Mexico border in Nogales, Arizona.
During his first court appearance on January 31, Kelly requested that his bail be reduced so that he could help his wife and tend to the ranch.
"She's there by herself," Kelly stated. "Nobody to take care of her, the livestock, or the ranch. And I'm not going anywhere. I can't come up with a million dollars."'
Kelly's next court appearance is scheduled for February 22, KVOA-TV reported.
Man facing first degree murder charge after allegedly killing migrant at this ranchyoutu.be
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