Friday, December 21, 2012

After Newtown, Charity Scam Hits Victim's Family

After a tragedy the magnitude of last week's school shootings in Newtown, Conn., it is common to see charities emerge in an effort to help the victims. Yet another trend has emerged after these incidents that is not quite as uplifting: Charity scams.

The Huffington Post reported Wednesday that an individual was soliciting donations on behalf of the family of 6-year-old Noah Ponzer, who was killed during the shooting. The e-mail claimed they would send cards, packages, and money to Ponzer's parents, family, and siblings. A website was even set up, which used Noah's name as the address, and included links to petitions on gun control.

After finding out about the bogus solicitation Alexis Haller, Noah's uncle, alerted authorities to put an end to it. He was quoted in The Huffington Post article as saying "These scammers are stealing from the families of the victims of this horrible tragedy."

The website in question was turned over to the Ponzer family and its creator, who was identified as Jason Martin, reportedly told Victoria Haller, Noah's Aunt, who had replied to the original e-mail, that it was meant to honor Noah and promote gun control.

This isn't the first time, and it probably won't be the last, that bogus charities have emerged following a tragedy or some other disaster. For instance, after the the shootings at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo., scammers contacted victims' families asking for credit card donations.

You can read the full story in The Huffington Post.

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