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Stark County mother's attorney disputes accusation that she faked daughter's terminal illness

Gavel
Posted at 5:49 PM, May 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-24 18:41:17-04

CANTON, Ohio — The attorney for a Stark County mother accused of falsely claiming her 11-year-old daughter was terminally ill released a statement Monday refuting the accusation.

Earlier this month, the Stark County Sheriff's Office opened an investigation into claims Lindsey Abbuhl falsely claimed her daughter was terminally ill in an attempt to raise money.

According to a neglect and abuse complaint filed with juvenile court, the child was examined by a medical professional, and it was found "there is no evidence to support mother's claims" the girl, who we've chosen not to name, is terminally ill.

A judge then granted the girl's father temporary custody of the 11-year-old.

In a separate court filing, the girl's father said his ex-wife set up GoFundMe accounts and fundraisers to collect donations for the girl. A GoFundMe spokesperson said the fundraising campaign is no longer active and that their Trust & Safety team is investigating.

News 5 reached out to Abbuhl multiple times before reporting the story last week but did not hear back.

RELATED: Stark County mom accused of faking daughter's terminal illness

On Monday, Abbuhl’s attorney, Paul Kelley, declined an interview but provided this statement regarding his client:

This case has been overly sensationalized by the media to slander a woman who has been caring for a child with a number of verifiable, medically diagnosed illnesses.

The records my client has provided to my office include records from an Ohio physician documenting that the child was/is suffering from a life threatening condition. Records also indicate the child to have lesion(s) on the brain as well as abnormal EEG testing results.

My client is a loving mother who cares deeply for this child and whom has gone to incredible lengths to protect her health and well-being.

My client has pocketed not one dime from the GoFundMe account set up for her daughter and intends to return the money in full if this is ultimately determined to be necessary by the local district attorney for Stark County, Ohio.

However - she adamantly asserts her innocence in this matter as there has been no evidence adduced whatsoever at this point that she has in anyway induced or created her daughter’s symptoms or conditions. This story is a product of hearsay from individuals who were seemingly able to manipulate and convince children services that my client was fabricating the child’s illnesses and whom did so without access to medical records and documents - and I’ve seen no evidence produced indicating that my client did in fact fabricate the child’s test results or diagnoses - in fact the evidence I’ve reviewed which does exist, exists to the contrary.

-Paul Kelley, Esq.

The Stark County Sheriff's Office said last week it couldn't comment further on the ongoing investigation. So far, Abbuhl has not been criminally charged in the case.