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AG's Office: Springfield 'Charity Scam' Must Stop


Attorney General Chris Koster’s office says a Nixa woman and three North Carolina residents have been pocketing donations that were meant to go toward locating missing children. KSMU’s Jennifer Moore has details.

The AG’s office says Susan Reade Durham of Nixa placed about 148 donation canisters throughout Springfield businesses to collect the money. The canisters have a slot for money, some candy for people who give, and pictures of missing children on them.

According to a release from Koster’s office, Durham pocketed the money—at least 3,400 dollars a month.

Koster says he’s asking a Greene County court to order Durham and three other defendants from North Carolina to stop soliciting the money, and to pay restitution and civil penalties for violating state law.

Koster also says the North Carolina defendants sold Durham the business plan and materials needed to carry out the scam.

KSMU reached Durham at her home Friday morning by phone. She told KSMU that she is – quote -- “totally innocent,” and did not wish to comment further.

For KSMU News, I’m Jennifer Moore.