Two GoFundMe online campaigns that support Darren Wilson, the officer who was named as the shooter of Michael Brown, stopped accepting donations without explanation after a police charity was unsure what they would be able to do with the money. Shield of Hope, the police charity that runs the “Support Officer Darren Wilson” page, which reportedly raised $235, 550, and the “Support Officer Wilson” page, which reportedly raised $197,620, both have no idea if they’re able to donate the raised funds to Wilson’s legal defense team. If someone tries to donate to either page, a “Donations Are Complete!” message shows up on the screen.
GoFundMe spokeswoman Kelsea Little said to the Los Angeles Times in a statement that the website did not stop the page from accepting donations. “Each and every GoFundMe campaign organizer is able to decide for themselves when they would like to stop accepting donations,” Little said. “Organizers may also choose to begin accepting donations again at a later date.”
Missouri state Rep. Jeff Roorda, who is also one of the charity’s officers, said to the RiverFront Times that Shield of Hope would give the money back to contributors if they aren’t able to legally give the money to Wilson’s team. “If we find money was donated to the Shield of Home GoFundMe,” he said, “and it can’t be used for the express purpose it was intended for, we will return it.”
Although Shield of Hope did not create the GoFundMe account for Wilson, they decided to manage it after a teenage girl, who launched the first fundraiser, was receiving death threats. Since she was in charge of creating the fundraiser, the money could still be used for Wilson’s team. But, if the money can’t be used for the team, the charity will not use it. The L.A. Times also reports that the “Support Officer Wilson” Facebook page posted a message to its followers, saying that lawyers were working on a “solution” as to why the page was shut down. But, the page did not reveal any more information.
Roorda said to the RiverFront Times that many supporters of the two campaigns are already considering transferring the funds to the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 15, which supports St. Louis suburban counties, including Ferguson.
We’re all here for no support for Darren Wilson. What’s actually heartwarming is that a “Michael Brown Justice Fund” GoFundMe page, managed by Mike Brown’s attorney Benjamin Crump, has raised $322,290 and counting already. DONATE TO MICHAEL BROWN’S FAMILY HERE.
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