BOWLING GREEN, OH (Toledo News Now) - Kimberlie Gustwiller faced a judge for the first time Monday after police say she faked having cancer and collected donations.
The 38 year old McComb resident is charged with one count of felony theft and is subject to 6 to12 months in the county justice center and a $2,500 fine.
Gustwiller said she did not have the money for an attorney, so judge Mark Reddin said a public defender would be appointed.
Bond was set at $15,000 with 10 percent applicable. Gustwiller was released roughly an hour later on $1,500 bail.
In her native North Baltimore, residents had been collecting donations and were preparing for a fundraiser on October 20.
Police must go through the difficult process of trying to return the thousands of dollars and items that were donated to the rightful owners.
"We're going to try to compile the list of who gave. A lot of people are going to come forward, I'm not sure what's going to happen to the funds afterwards if we're not able to disseminate back to the citizens. That's for the courts to decide," said Chief Allan Baer with the North Baltimore Police.
Robert 'Cappy' Rensch is a lifelong North Baltimore resident. Rensch knows Gustwiller's father but not Kimberlie herself.
"I think she ought to make restitution to everybody that donated anything to her being she was trying to scam 'em," said Rensch.
Rensch is a cancer survivor. He had a brain tumor removed less than a month ago and is currently going through six weeks of kemo therapy.
Rensch said he receives plenty of well wishes from residents and he is not surprised at all that they would reach out to one of their own.
"They were just mislead by an individual. I think the community of North Baltimore is a good supporting town of anybody that has trouble," said Rensch.
Chief Baer echoes those sentiments.
"I don't want to take away from the amazing people in this community and what they've done. How giving they were. I'm confident that's not going to change," said Chief Baer.
Family members were in the courtroom but they chose not to speak to the media. Gustwiller's next court date will be a week form Monday at 9 a.m.
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