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GoFundMe imposters pretend to be tornado survivors

The family of the Springdale tornado survivor is warning the public that someone was using their photos of devastation to try and make money using their GoFundMe.

SPRINGDALE, Ark — The family of a Springdale tornado survivor said someone was using their photos of devastation to try and make money. 

When the EF-3 tornado hit Wednesday, March 30th, Karrie Stout’s house was in the eye of the storm. She says thankful she and her son were able to walk away untouched, though their home is a total loss.

“I don’t know how, it’s just awesome, I’m just so thankful,” Stout said.

Unfortunately, her brother was caught outside in the storm. Karrie said he came to warn her about the storm, but was caught in the twister and landed near her home. 

After landing, a tree fell on his face. His injuries put him in critical condition at the hospital. 

As of Friday, his sister says he’s significantly improved and could be going home soon.

“It’s a miracle, by the grace of God. My brother got dropped off. He heard the sound and come to warn me,” Karrie said.

With the good news of her brother’s release, Karrie is still concerned with moving past the tornado. 

To help relieve financial pain, she started a GoFundMe page to help raise funds for a new home and to help her brother. She posted photos and an account of her experience during the tornado.

Soon after making the page and posting it to Facebook, she said someone in Fayetteville used her photos to create their own GoFundMe but this fund was a scam. The people in Fayetteville were pretending to be tornado survivors.

“Somebody showed me it and asked me if it was my house on it and I said yeah. But the people that created it, they said that they were hacked and that somebody did it on their Facebook, he deleted everything,” Karrie said.

She adds the page creator wrote that he and his family made it out of the storm alive and they were doing fine. Karrie says this adds frustration to an already difficult week.

“I told myself I wouldn’t cry…it’s really hurtful.”

With that pain, Karrie wants to send a message to the scammers, as she continues to piece together her next steps.

“To the people that made the fundraiser, shame on you. It’s just not right to try to take other people’s losses and try to make again for yourself.”

She adds her family is doing their best to save for their new home. If you’d like to donate, Karrie provide the GoFundMe page she organized herself.

And if you suspect an imposter or fake GoFundMe report the page to GoFundMe officials.

To donate to the family, click here. To donate to David Stout's medical needs, click here.  

RELATED: Salvation Army of Springdale gives back to Springdale tornado victims

RELATED: Suspect fled on foot after alleged bank robbery in Siloam Springs

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