FRIEDENS, Pa. (WHTM) – A couple is accused of faking the birth and death of a baby to receive gifts from their friends and family.
Geoffrey and Kaycee Lang, who concocted the scheme, had announced a pregnancy, held a baby shower and even posted photos of their newly born son “Easton” on social media.
The couple announced his death and supposedly cremated him. To cover the expenses of the “funeral,” they started a GoFundMe which raise $550.
The two claimed that the child had died of “respiratory distress syndrome.”
They now face charges of theft by deception, fraud and receiving stolen property.
A friend of theirs reported to the police the fabrication of the entire pregnancy leading to a warrant and investigation of the couple and their “child.”
Police searched the Langs’ home and found a life-like baby doll along with a personalized urn with the name Easton Walt Lang engraved on it.
State police investigated further and discovered there were no hospital records of the birth and no medical history of the child or the mother. The funeral home the couple claimed the child had been cremated also said they had no dealings with the couple, WTOC reported.
Police report that the couple was able to take more than $600 in donations from family and friends, however, the GoFundMe donations did not go through as the company has an extensive policy to protect donors from instances of fraudulent campaigns.
GoFundMe spokesperson Meghan Scripture offered this statement in regards to the situation:
This type of behavior is not tolerated on GoFundMe. We will fully cooperate with law enforcement officials during their investigation and we will issue full refunds to all donors.
We have a zero-tolerance policy for any misuse on the platform. All donors are fully protected by the GoFundMe Guarantee, which means donors are protected by a comprehensive refund policy if misuse occurs. This campaign received 15 donations totaling $550.
A number could not be found for the couple, and it is unclear if they have a lawyer.