Forty-one donors in January gave a total of $1,666 with a goal of reaching $10,000 to benefit a Israel Costilla, according to a screenshot taken of the page before the account was deactivated.
The GoFundMe campaign for Israel was created by Shannon Jolene Carpenter on Jan. 6.
Carpenter, who did not know the Costilla family personally, launched the campaign after seeing the extent of Israel's injuries in a photo provided by Rayetta Trigg, whose pit bull attacked Israel.
"When (Trigg) let me see the picture I literally almost fell off of my stool. I showed the picture to my husband and friend Adam and they were shocked as well," Carpenter said.
Israel needed more than 300 stitches, surgery and physical therapy.
In a statement on the GoFundMe page, Carpenter noted donations would go "directly to (Israel's) well being and help the parents with any extra costs they may have due to this tragic event."
On Jan. 13, Andreana Costilla — Israel's mother — contacted GoFundMe and requested the campaign be deactivated after reaching out to Carperter via text message. Costilla wanted the page deleted for personal reasons.
"I shut the page down immediately once I got that text," Carpenter said.
Four months later, the funds remain held by GoFundMe.
"A lot of the donors have reached out to us," said Ana Costilla — Israel's grandmother, "and I explained the situation to them, and they were very understanding — upset, but understanding."
GoFundMe said Tuesday a payment processor would "continue working with both (Carpenter) and the family to ensure a safe transfer of funds."
Emails between the Costilla family from GoFundMe, however, suggest the funds may never reach the family.
No one in the Costilla family was established as a beneficiary on the campaign, emails between the Costilla family and GoFundMe note. The company urged Costilla to reach out to Carpenter to privately settle the matter.
Multiple attempts of reaching out to Carpenter went unanswered, the family says.
Carpenter thought the issue was settled.
"I assume(d) (GoFundMe) gave the family the money," Carpenter said Tuesday.
Carpenter stated she would contact GoFundMe soon to get the issue worked out.
"I will give (GoFundMe) a call for sure because this situation needs to be resolved immediately," she said.
(San Angelo Standard Times - April 19, 2018)