BARTOW, Fla. — A Florida woman who set up a fraudulent GoFundMe account that promised to support the families of three friends murdered last July has been sentenced to three years in prison.
Amanda Lynn Brown, 33, was also ordered to repay $11,500 to GoFundMe, which had already refunded money to those who had contributed to the account she established after Kevin Springfield, Brandon Rollins and Damion Tillman were killed in Frostproof, about 65 miles south of Orlando in Polk County.
Brown used the money on shopping sprees, sent herself money via PayPal and paid off her Frostproof utility bill of nearly $1,400, according to a sheriff’s department investigation.
“This is the worst kind of human conduct to try and profit from the horrible tragedy of a triple murder while taking advantage of wonderful people donating their hard-earned money to help those in distress,” Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said. “I hope she is miserable and thinks of her terrible conduct every day she is in prison.”
Court officials said she made no statement at her sentencing and did not offer an apology to the families.
“I just hope she thinks about what she done and what she done to our family,” said Dottie Payton, Rollins’ mother.
Brown remains in the Polk County Jail, awaiting trial on unrelated drug charges.
Tony “T.J.” Wiggins, meanwhile, is charged in the triple homicide and faces the death penalty if convicted. Wiggins, of Frostproof, was arrested three days after the July 17 murders when a store receipt in Tillman’s truck led detectives to a surveillance video at a nearby Dollar General.
Ledger reporter Kimberly C. Moore can be reached at [email protected] or 863-802-7514. Follow her on Twitter at @KMooreTheLedger.