Brandon Hinman, the husband of the young mother who succumbed to a rare form of cancer in May, is charged with grand larceny and check fraud after stealing thousands of dollars from a checking account that was setup to accept donations to help the family pay medical bills and benefit his twin daughters. Hinman was not listed on the account.
The Cayuga County Sheriff's Department says Hinman, 31, was charged with grand larceny Thursday. He was arraigned in the Village of Weedsport Court and released on his own recognizance.
T he parents of Jenna Hinman have both made statements to police, affirming their son-in-law took thousands of dollars in donated money that was donated to pay medical bills and benefit his twin daughters. Brandon was arrested this week and charged with check fraud.
Statements in the court record from Jeffrey and Kim Blaisdell say Brandon Hinman began withdrawing money from the accounts before Jenna passed away on May 5th.
The Cayuga County Sheriff's Department says between March 28 and May 3 of this year, Hinman forged the signature of one of the account holders on 17 separate checks. Those checks ranged in amounts from $300 to $8,000. Thirteen of those checks were made out to Hinman. The forged checks amount to more than $46,000 and the money was not used for the intended purpose of helping the Hinman family. The Sheriff's Department has not said what the money was actually used for.
Hinman was charged with one count of criminal possession of a forged instrument on Tuesday. On Thursday, he was charged with grand larceny, which is a felony theft of more than $3,000.
The Blaisdell's discovered the money was missing in the days before their daughter died. They waited until afterwards to give Brandon a chance to explain and return the money. They confronted him and he told them only he had the money in a safe place.
The family says Brandon was not put in charge of the accounts because it was known he was not good with money.
In addition to the forged checks, the Blaisdell's say Brandon Hinman has received checks for $100,000 and $37,000 from life insurance and another $27,000 from t-shirt sales.
The Blaisdell's also say Hinman is no longer in the Army and has not seen his twin girls since June 5th. He has not been providing for their care. The Cayuga County District Attorney's office says the investigation into the case is ongoing.
The money donated after that time directly to the family has gone in a separate account and has not been affected.
The money Brandon Hinman is accused of taking is not the same account that has grown to nearly $200,000 through a GofundMe page that was started by Jenna's uncle. John Warter III tells us the fund is secure and still accepting donations.
You can read the full statements by Jenna's parents to authorities that are part of the case against Brandon Hinman.