Police: Woman Fakes Son’s Illness For Donations
WILLOUGHBY, OH — A former employee of a Willoughby restaurant was arrested for allegedly faking the illness of a family member for money.
According to Willoughby police, 34-year-old Jillian Knight was an employee at the Steak on a Stone restaurant in 2010 and informed her co-workers that her son was diagnosed with a deadly type of lung cancer.
Employees at the restaurant organized a benefit for Jillian and her son and gave over $600 in collected tips to Knight for Ryan’s treatment. A Wickliffe tavern, along with several other local businesses, held the benefit in May of 2010 in which $2,100 was raised.
Willoughby police say Knight quit her job shortly before the benefit and could not be located after the event.
Police contacted an associate of Knight’s, who said her son only suffered from asthma. Knight later admitted that she created the hoax and a warrant was issued for her arrest.
Knight, who is now a Columbus resident, was arrested and charged with misdemeanor theft. She will appear in court on Thursday.
The $2,100 raised through the benefit was donated for cancer research.