A New Jersey woman has been sentenced to three years of probation for falsely claiming her 9-year-old son had cancer in an effort to raise money.
Susan Stillwaggon, 35, of Pennsauken, pleaded guilty Friday to theft by deception, agreeing to serve 75 hours of community service and to reimburse one victim $327 as part of her sentence.
She may be ordered to pay back other donors, too. Police have said she raised thousands of dollars through various small fundraisers.
At the hearing, she apologized for her actions, and told the judge that she is receiving mental health treatment.
She admitted to fabricating that her son had Hodgkin's lymphoma and holding fundraisers for him.
Authorities say she maintained her story for several months until March, when officials at the boy's school became suspicious and asked her for documentation of his illness.
Christina Rebilas, a former friend who helped spearhead fundraising efforts, recalled in court Friday having emotionally difficult conversations with her own children about how one of their soccer teammates might die.
"Sue is a monster,'' she wrote in a statement to the court.