If you donated your hard-earned funds to New York mother Shivonie Deokaran’s GoFundMe page, you might want to get your money back. The thing is, Deokaran likely doesn’t have leukemia, so she doesn’t need money to help with the mounting medical bills mentioned on the crowd sourcing site set up by her son and a family friend last summer.
According to reports, Deokaran, a restaurant owner who was quite popular in her Westchester County community of Ardsley in New York, is a wanted woman. Police want to talk to her to get confirmation about the terminal illness she claimed to suffer with and documented with a bald head in many compelling photos online.
Suspicion arose when Deokaran, a mother of two, began collecting donations to support treatment for the illness that she claimed left her with just 16 months to live. All told, she collected more than $60K. Her son’s high school football team hosted a spaghetti dinner fundraiser in her honor and raised over $16K. Local Town Supervisor Paul Feiner helped her family raise $12K. The GoFundMe page hit a home run, collecting $25K to help Deokaran. But the scammer wasn’t done yet. She even convinced unsuspecting supporters to buy her a therapy dog named Gia.
The plot thickened when cops asked Deokaran to share medical records to prove her illness. She quickly closed her Indian restaurant and fled to Florida with her two sons and boyfriend, Nikhlesh Parekh.
While police can’t seem to get a hold of Deokaran, her beau spoke to authorities, explaining that the woman simply stopped chemotherapy and switched to receiving alternative health treatments.
According to “Inside Edition,” Ardsley police officer Tony Vacca said, “It’s an open investigation … That’s all we can elaborate on. We don’t want to jeopardize the case.”
Here’s hoping police officers are overreacting and Deokaran didn’t intentionally defraud members of her community out of thousands.