Nevada Woman Arrested in Alleged Fundraising Hoax

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

MESQUITE, Nev. (AP) - A 36-year-old woman has been arrested in southern Nevada on suspicion of trying to collect money by lying that one of her five children was suffering from a malignant form of liver cancer.

Shawnanna Starr Flores of Mesquite, 80 miles northeast of Las Vegas, was arrested Friday night on felony charges of obtaining money under false pretenses, fraud, theft and child abuse.

Flores is accused of falsely stating that a 7-year-old son had a liver cancer known as Hepatoblastoma.

The Spectrum of St. George, Utah, reports ( ) a benefit car wash on Aug. 24 raised $404 to benefit the child and a garage sale netted an undisclosed amount of money.

In addition, a fund was established for the youth at Wells Fargo Bank and money jars were placed in businesses around Mesquite.

Police say Flores was booked into the Mesquite jail and was to be taken to the Clark County jail in Las Vegas sometime over the weekend. It wasn't immediately clear if she had an attorney.

Investigators say future fundraisers were scheduled in Mesquite to assist the child, and the case came to light when organizers of one of them dropped him from the list of beneficiaries after Flores failed to provide documentation of her son's liver cancer.

The Spectrum reports Flores and her family shaved their heads Monday in support of the boy, who they claimed was losing his hair because of chemotherapy.

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