The New Jersey woman who helped conjure up a fake viral tale that led to $400,000 in GoFundMe contributions for a homeless man plead guilty on Monday for her part in the scam.
Katelyn McClure pleaded guilty to second-degree theft by deception as part of the agreement in New Jersey Superior Court.
McClure, who faces four years in prison, is required to help pay back the ill-gotten gains that were the result of a bogus story McClure made up with then-boyfriend Mark D’Amico and vagrant Johnny Bobbitt.
McLure, 28, of Bordentown, NJ, claimed online that she was stranded on a Philadelphia highway in 2017 after her car ran out of gas — but Bobbitt came to her rescue and gave his last $20 so she should get on her way.
Her heartwarming tale went viral online and on television — and then McClure and D’Amico started a GoFundMe page they explained was to help raise money for Bobbit, a homeless veteran.
But the trio’s scheme fell apart once Bobbitt sued the couple for not sharing the dough, which led investigators to probe the story.
All three were arrested in New Jersey last November and charged with theft by deception and conspiracy to commit theft by deception.
McClure must testify in court against her ex-boyfriend Mark D’Amico, who denies the charges.
Bobbitt, meanwhile, also plead guilty to a charge of conspiracy to commit theft by deception.
He was sentenced to five years of probation.