Infamous fundraising website GoFundMe decided to take a side in a pending legal case involving a rancher who allegedly killed an illegal alien that had invaded his land.
GoFundMe has reportedly wiped multiple campaigns arranged to raise funds for the legal defense of Arizona rancher George Alan Kelly, who is currently locked up in a jail cell on a bond costing $1 million.
As the Daily Mail reported, GoFundMe prohibited the fundraising efforts, claiming that it violates their policy of not allowing the assistance of those accused of ‘violent crimes.’
“GoFundMe’s Terms of Service explicitly prohibit campaigns that raise money to cover the legal defense of anyone formally charged with an alleged violent crime,” a spokesman told the Daily Mail. “Consistent with this long-standing policy, any fundraising campaigns for the legal defense of someone charged with murder are removed from our platform.”
Luckily for Kelly, a GiveSendGo campaign was started to assist with his legal effort.
Kelly, who is a 73-year-old man, allegedly shot the Mexican national on Jan. 30 while he was on Kelly’s land near Nogales, Arizona.
Since being taken to jail, Kelly has pleaded to be let out or at least receive reduced bail so he could help his wife take care of their farm.
Meanwhile, Kelly’s court-appointed lawyer, Brenna Larkin, has reportedly made no efforts to have him let out or receive a lower bond.
Numerous Americans turned to online, TV, and print media alike to support Kelly, including people on social media and Fox News Host Tucker Carlson, who dedicated a segment to Kelly on his primetime show.
The right to self-defense is under attack. Please help George Alan Kelly.https://t.co/rJTIemc7Is pic.twitter.com/bBypW2Z9Rr
— Dee Dee Weeks (@DeeDeeWeeks) February 10, 2023
In a statement given to Fox News on Thursday, GiveSendGo co-founder Heather Wilson explained, “This is exactly why GiveSendGo exists. To allow people to have a voice and gain support in times of need. At this time [we] do not know any more than what is being shared on the news, but we do know that in our country a legal defense is not just for the wealthy.”
She added, “We will continue to allow the raising of funds for legal defense on GiveSendGo, as the presumption of innocent until proven guilty is a bedrock to our Justice system.”
Wilson finished off her statement by pointing out that, unlike GoFundMe, she does not believe it is her role to pick and choose which fundraising campaigns to allow vs ban based on her own personal preferences.
“We understand we are not the judge and jury; we will not take down campaigns based on our own biases,” she said. “We will be praying for all involved.”