US woman sentenced to jail for faking son’s cancer
Thursday, March 31, 2011
A Michigan judge sentenced a woman to a year in jail Tuesday for giving her twelve-year-old son drugs so that he appeared to have and telling him he was dying. She also shaved his eyebrows and head. The motive was to fool her son, relatives and the community, including churchs, into thinking he had in a to collect money.
said Carol Lynn Schnuphase, 47, shaved her son's head and eyebrows and fed him food laced with so he would look sick and feel ill. The scam produced thousands of dollars in donations. When authorities attempted to removed him from her custody, she faked his death.
|She's made a living as a con artist for years. She's always had a sinister side.|
—Patrick Kelsch, Schnuphase's cousin
Circuit Judge Richard Caretti also gave Schnuphase three years' and six months . She must also pay , including $10,000 to several churches, , and a woman who provided financial help and gifts. The sentence was based on a reached by the prosecutors and Schnuphase's lawyer, Dominic Greco. Schnuphase, formerly of Roseville, plead to charges of child abuse and false pretensions in February.
"Your conduct, ma’am, in this case is reprehensible. To tell a vulnerable, defenseless young boy that he is dying of cancer for your own pecuniary gain is almost beyond the realm of comprehension," said Judge Caretti. "To then give your son strong opiate-based pills crushed up in histo further your despicable scheme defies all reason."
Schnuphase's attorney Greco said Schnuphase was suffering from the stress of the loss of her job and "vehemently denies" drugging her son. She claims she gave himmedicine. "It was the snowball effect. She didn't feel she could get out of it," Greco said. "She was basically at the end of her rope."
Schnuphase's cousin, Patrick Kelsch, called the sentence "ridiculous" and said, "She's made a living as afor years." He added, "She's always had a sinister side."
A hearing to terminate Schnuphase’s parental rights to her son will be held in April.
- Christine Ferretti. "Mom gets jail time for 'reprehensible' act of faking son's cancer" — , March 30, 2011
- Mike Householder (Associated Press). "Jail time for woman, Carol Schnuphase, accused of faking son’s cancer" — , March 30, 2011