Man accused of stealing donations to Concord murder victim’s family

  • Jeffrey Grenier, 25, of Manchester faces a felony charge of theft by unauthorized taking. Police say he stole from a GoFundMe campaign, which was supposed to be for the family of Concord murder victim Sabrina Galusha. Courtesy

  • A screen grab shows the GoFundMe page used to raise money after Sabrina Galusha’s death. Courtesy

Monitor staff
Published: 11/29/2017 3:39:05 PM

A Manchester man is accused of stealing several thousand dollars raised to help the family of Sabrina Galusha pay for her funeral expenses.

Police said Jeffrey Grenier, 25, used the money raised for Galusha’s funeral expenses to purchase a new car for himself.

Grenier created an online GoFundMe page titled “Sabrina Galusha Funeral Fund” in June, stating he wanted to assist the Galusha family. However, family members told police they never received any money from the campaign.

“For those who knew Sabrina she was a kind, caring, and loving person. She always knew how to make anyone smile,” Grenier wrote on the online donation page.

“Thank you in advanced for donating,” he added. “I’m going to issue a paper check to the family.”

Galusha, 23, was fatally stabbed in her hometown of Concord on the evening of May 30 outside Penacook Place Apartments, according to the New Hampshire Attorney General’s Office. Grenier’s GoFundMe page was set up two days after Galusha’s death.

A months-long Concord police investigation found that the money raised was deposited into Grenier’s personal bank account, Lt. Sean Ford said Wednesday.

“Detectives learned that, on the very day that the funds were made available to him, Grenier used a portion of the money to purchase a new car for himself,” Ford said in a statement.

Grenier said on the donation page that he met Galusha while he was working at the Spirit Halloween store in Concord near the Steeplegate Mall, but police said they couldn’t substantiate any claims of a relationship.

Police arrested Grenier on Wednesday and charged him with a felony count of theft by unauthorized taking. He is accused of stealing $5,877, which is the total amount of all the donations minus administrative fees from the website.

Grenier was released on $20,000 personal recognizance and is scheduled to be arraigned Dec. 14 in Merrimack County Superior Court.

An official with GoFundMe said Galusha’s family will receive the money raised on their behalf.

“In this case, GoFundMe has taken action and banned the individual and will make sure the families receives the funds raised on their behalf,” Bobby Whithorne, a spokesman for GoFundMe said in a statement.

This isn’t a unique case in New Hampshire.

In Nashua, a woman set up a GoFundMe account last year to pay for the funeral expenses of her best friend, Tabitha Fauteux, who had overdosed in California. The woman, Krystal Gentley, stole about $5,000 and pleaded guilty on one felony count of theft by unauthorized taking this summer.

The criminal trial of Galusha’s accused killer, Daswan Jette, 20, has yet to be scheduled. He faces charges of first- and second-degree murder and is being held without bail. Investigators said Galusha and three friends met up with Jette outside the apartment complex to sell him a bag of marijuana, which he stole, prompting the altercation that led to Galusha’s death.

(Alyssa Dandrea can be reached at 369-3319, or on Twitter @_ADandrea.)

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