Fairfield man allegedly fakes illness to raise money

FAIRFIELD - Many Fairfield businesses have helped raise money for a resident who claimed to be suffering from cancer by placing a collection jar on their counters. But recently, there is reason to believe the man in need may not actually have cancer.

?He had stage four cancer and they had lost their home ,? says Rich Herzfeld, of the Chef?s Table. ?Really pulled on our heart strings. It was a pretty intense story. Pretty dramatic.?

Chef?s Table employees donated their tips and a local celebrity donated $5,000. But recently, Herzfeld says the facts just didn?t add up about the man they were helping and his medical condition. Herzfeld contacted the Fairfield Police Department to find out if the man was indeed sick.

Police Capt. Robert Comers says the man told detectives he did have cancer and offered proof.

?There was a letter that he produced from a doctor indicating he had a medical condition,? Comers says. ?We were able to establish that letter was in fact a forgery.?

Police can?t access the man?s medical records because of privacy laws. They also say a lack of evidence prevents them from issuing a warrant. They have also found out that the man has moved from his last address, and they do not have new information about his residence.

About 10 businesses in town had the collection cans but have now removed them.

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