Woman charged with theft from fundraiser
Drumheller RCMP have charged one person in relation to missing funds from a local fundraiser for a young man battling cancer.
On June 14, the RCMP began an investigation into a complaint that a substantial amount of money from a silent auction in benefit of Brandon Hall and his family was never forwarded to the Halls. On Saturday, April 30, the community hosted a fundraiser to support Brandon Hall, who is battling cancer, and help his family to assist with expenses incurred by his treatment. The event included a Poker Run, which headed out in the morning from the Newcastle Hotel and wrapped up at Top Rocker Motorcycle Gear in Rosedale. There, they hosted a celebration as well as a silent auction supported by many businesses and individuals in the valley.
The RCMP have laid one charge of theft under $5,000 against Ashley Fredrickson, 33, of Drumheller. She has been released and is scheduled to appear in provincial court in Drumheller on Friday, August 26 at 10 a.m.
Jamie Worman was one of the organizers of the event, and tells The Mail that it was the family that learned the funds were missing. Everyone involved was upset. “When they brought it to our attention, we didn’t know what to think, words don’t even describe the emotion when you hear something like that,” said Worman.
Despite this, Worman would rather focus on the good that came from the event.
“It is unfortunate that something like this has to happen, but I am still focusing on all the positive aspects,” he said. “The law will take care of itself, I don’t want a shadow to be overcast on all the people involved… I won’t let one person ruin that for me.” He is grateful to all the organizers as well as all the people who gave.
“The people who gave stuff to a family that many didn’t even know, in a time when money is tight, it just shows the kind of community we have. There are some beautiful people.”
In a post on Facebook, Ashley Fredrickson urged residents to wait until the courts to make their decision.
"There were many people who had access to said money, but I have been accused...I have been assured this will likely be thrown out in court, as there is no proof, and too many people were involved," said Fredrickson.
More than 100 riders came out last April to support Brandon Hall and his family as he battled cancer. A Drumheller woman has been charged with theft following the fundraiser.