Cox Announces "Missing Children" Donation Box Scammer to Get Jail TimeContact:
John Sellek or Joy Yearout 517-373-8060
October 27, 2010
LANSING - Attorney
General Mike Cox today announced that Joseph Carr was sentenced to serve six
months in the Ingham County Jail for his role in a donation box charity scam.
Carr was convicted of one count of false pretenses over $1,000, a felony, one
count of soliciting charitable donations without a license, a six-month
misdemeanor, and one count of acting as a professional fundraiser without filing
a license application, a six-month misdemeanor.
convictions were the result of Cox's charges against Carr for preying on
mid-Michigan residents' generosity by placing charitable donation collection
boxes in nearly 90 local businesses as a part of a "Missing Children" charity
scam. Judge Joyce Draganchuk sentenced Carr to serve 60 months on probation,
perform 480 hours of community service, and pay $12,000 in restitution to the
Michigan Amber Alert Foundation to help locate missing children.
will serve as punishment to Joseph Carr, but it should also serve as a warning
to other scammers who consider preying on the generosity of the public," said
Cox. "Every day, thousands of local charities across our state serve Michigan
communities honorably. We will continue to prosecute criminals who exploit the
generosity of Michigan residents and undermine the public's faith in
55, of Williamston placed collection boxes at 88 retail locations across
Lansing, East Lansing, Grand Ledge, Holt, Okemos and Williamston. From February
through June, 2009, Carr collected between $1,500 and $2,000 a month from
unsuspecting customers who were told their donations would be used to help find
missing children through an organization called the "Beacon Project." Instead,
Carr allegedly used the money to pay his personal living expenses.
requires most charities apply for and receive a solicitation license from the
Attorney General's Office. In addition, professional fundraisers, like Carr,
who receive money for soliciting charitable donations must also obtain a license
and maintain a $10,000 bond for the protection of charities and the public.
For tips on
wise charitable giving or to see if a charity is licensed to solicit in
Michigan, please visit www.michigan.gov/ag and click on "Charities," or call the
Attorney General's Charitable Trust Section at (517) 373-1152.