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Police warn of fake GoFundMe accounts in fallen officer’s name

Police in Bradley, Illinois have said that people are posting false fundraisers on the crowdfunding platform GoFundMe. They added that those creating the fundraisers are pretending to be members of the family of fallen officer Sgt. Marlene Rittmanic.

The Bradley police department released a statement to Facebook that said: “There have been several Go Fund Me fundraisers posted by supposed family members of Sgt Marlene Rittmanic. NONE of these are legit and the family will NOT be creating any fundraising pages through Go Fund Me. If you see a fundraising page for Sgt Marlene Rittmanic you can report it to them as fraudulent and if you’ve donated to one please seek a refund.” 

So far, five suspects in total have been arrested in relation to the shooting at a motel last Wednesday night and subsequent investigation: Darius Sullivan, 25; Xandria Harris, 26; Bryce Baker, 20; Daniel Acros, 19; and Joshua Adams, 26.

Rittmanic and another Bradley officer, Tyler Bailey, responded to the report of dogs barking in an unattended vehicle at the hotel that Wednesday night. While they were speaking with the possible owner of the car in a hotel room, police reported that people in the room attacked and fired at the officers.

The search for two of the suspects, Sullivan and Harris, made its way to Indiana. Rittmanic was killed as a result of the shooting, and Bailey was seriously wounded.

“Any time an officer is killed in the line of duty, no matter where it happens in the country, it affects all of us,” said Sgt. Glen Fitfield with the Indiana State Police.

Bradley police did say that there is a legitimate GoFundMe set up in order to help fund Officer Bailey’s medical and recovery bills as he remains in critical condition. The page says that Baily was recently married just two months ago to his wife, Sydney, who has stayed by his side through his time in the hospital.  

ARTICLE: ELIZABETH HERTZBERG

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: TIMESNEWSNETWORK.COM

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