A former beauty pageant queen has been sentenced to prison for faking cancer and deceiving numerous fundraisers who gave her money for her treatment. Brandi Weaver-Gates, who is a former Miss Pennsylvania, told friends in March 2013 that she was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphoctic Leukemia and would be receiving chemotherapy treatments at Baltimore’s John Hopkins Hospital. Unbeknownst to everyone, Gates was lying about the whole thing. And now she will pay the price, literally.
Gates had been telling everyone that she needed extra financial help for her medical treatments and like any good Samaritan, they happily obliged, helping her raise more than $30,000 through a number of different fundraisers and channels. Gates continued to keep up the ruse, and publications even updated people about her condition:
“The Centre Region has done it once again, this time uniting to help Brandi Weaver-Gates, who was diagnosed in March of 2013 with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. Since being diagnosed, she has undergone a series of medical treatments.”
One may be quick to call malarkey on the Centre County Gazette for reporting a false story, but Gates had everyone fooled. She even shaved her head to keep up appearances. Cracks in her story started to show, but Gates would bombard her social media profiles with updates about her treatment in order to cover her tracks. PennLive reported she even had her sister drive her to John Hopkins a few times a week and, when her sister was nervously waiting for her to finish up, she would just roam around the hospital.
But people started to become suspicious when they noticed her hair would always grow back and would refuse anyone to see her during chemotherapy. She was arrested last August, and she was stripped of her title of Miss Pennsylvania:
Gates has now been sentenced to two to four years in prison and five years of probation. And she was ordered to pay back the nearly $30,000 she made through fundraisers.