Authorities arrested two women in California for using a fake baby funeral to scam people out of money, Fox 40 reported Sunday.
Police in Modesto, Calif., said Chasity Doll and Tiffany Lyon collected nearly $700 for a funeral for baby Justin Michael Farrell, a child they claimed died of a heart condition while they were on vacation in the city.
"They have tugged on the heartstrings of people and taken advantage of them and that's really what is difficult to understand," Sgt. Craig Gundlach of the Modesto Police Department told Fox 40.
A policeman spotted the two women at a busy intersection holding up a sign with a baby’s photo and asking for funeral donations. After seeing the women dart in and out of traffic collecting money, the officer initially told the pair to stay on the sidewalk, but then started asking questions.
He asked how the baby died and what hospital he died at—but neither Doll nor Lyon had answers. After calling the county coroner, the officer found that there was no record of baby Farrell ever passing away in Modesto.
That’s because the baby photo had been printed off the Internet. The two women had pulled the same scam on Friday at another intersection in Modesto.
"What we know is that there a lot of good hearted people here in Modesto who are willing to give money to those in need, and we also have individuals in Modesto who are ready to take advantage," Gundlach told Fox 40.