Crime

Fake fundraising site looks to gain from Stanislaus Sheriff’s Department deaths

Criminals wasted little time seizing an opportunity to profit from the deaths of a Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department deputy and community service officer.

The Sheriff’s Department warned Monday morning of a fraudulent Gofundme page that’s been established and uses the photographs of Deputy Jason Garner and CSO Raschel Johnson. The two were killed in a single-vehicle crash Saturday morning on Crows Landing Road.

“As with any tragedy, there are always those criminals who find a way to take advantage of the great people in our community who want to help,” the Sheriff’s Department wrote in a news release. “... This is fake account and detectives are currently investigating who the account belongs to. Also be aware of people attempting to collect donations via phone calls. The Sheriff’s Department, nor any other group, association, or organization is collecting money or donations via phone call from community.”

The release includes a statement from Sheriff Adam Christianson: “Exploiting the Garner family and the Johnson family by soliciting fraudulent donations is a despicable criminal act. If identified, those criminal cowards will be arrested and prosecuted.”

There is an approved Gofundme account established by the Johnson family; it’s at www.gofundme.com/memorial-fund-for-cso-johnson.

Also, the Stanislaus Sworn Deputies Association is establishing a memorial fund for Garner and Johnson. Once established, the information will be shared on the Sheriff’s Department’s Facebook pages and at www.scsdonline.com.

Deke Farrow: 209-578-2327

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