PITTSBURGH — A man is accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars from the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Pittsburgh and Morgantown, and now there’s a warrant out for his arrest.
The Ronald McDonald House provides families with a “home away from home” for seriously ill children receiving medical treatment. The families that we talked to called this crime disgusting.
“For somebody to do that, it’s a Scrooge move and it’s despicable,” Lorraine Hoopsick tells Channel 11.
We met Lorraine Hoopsick outside of Children’s Hospital. She makes the long trek from Erie, sometimes multiple times a week, so her son can get chemotherapy treatments.
“I’ve had to quit my job,” Hoopsick adds. “We’re here more than we’re at home. We have no money coming in. The Ronald McDonald House, if we would have to stay here, is a blessing.”
That’s why she says she’s so sickened over what was taken from the charity, which helps so many families through their darkest days.
Police say 39-year-old Albert Sams, from the Atlanta, Georgia area, forged 18 checks meant for a vendor of the Ronald McDonald house. Those checks never made it into the right hands. Court documents say that Sams, who works for UPS, electronically duplicated the checks, signed them to his name and cashed them — worth nearly $86,000. That money was meant to make the lives of families with very sick children a little easier.
“To stay here is a blessing that you don’t have to worry about where your kids are, who’s taking care of your kids, how you’re going to get back and forth,” Hoopsick added.
Ronald McDonald House Charities of Pittsburgh and Morgantown tell Channel 11 its focus remains on its mission and it is “committed to helping children and their families lead happier, healthier and more productive lives.”
We did reach out to UPS for comment, but we have not heard back.
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