Jami Toler told her family, friends and co-workers at Hallmark Hospice that she had breast cancer and needed money for a double mastectomy and breast reconstructive surgery.
PHOENIX (CBS5) -
A Phoenix woman who pretended to have cancer to raise money for breast implants pleaded not guilty to felony fraud and theft charges Wednesday.
Jami Lynn Toler, 27, entered her plea in Maricopa County Superior Court, according to a court spokesman.
Police said Toler told her family, friends and co-workers at Hallmark Hospice that she had breast cancer and needed money for a double mastectomy and breast reconstructive surgery.
Court paperwork showed that Toler convinced at least 17 victims, including her grandparents, that she needed approximately $7,800 for the surgery and that she had no health insurance.
Toler's mother, Vickie Schirtzinger, even created a website for donations.
Police said more than $8,000 was put into a bank account, beginning September, from various donors. Burkhart says she helped raise about $3,000 out of the total amount.
By October, all the money was gone after several ATM withdrawals, according to Mesa police. The last transaction that left the bank account empty was the same day investigators say Toler paid a doctor $5,800 cash for a breast augmentation. Court paperwork shows Toler had the surgery Nov. 15.
Toler returned to work six weeks after having breast implants, a time period victim Kim Burkhart, a breast cancer survivor herself, said is too small for a true breast cancer patient.
She is facing two felony charges, including theft and fraudulent schemes and artifices.
Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.