Widower Accused of Stealing Funds from Wife's Cancer Fundraiser

- The Weedsport father of twin girls who lost their mother, Jenna Hinman, to a battle with a rare cancer, is now facing charges that he wrote checks to himself from an account dedicated to contributions from supporters – an account he didn’t have access to.

Brandon Hinman is accused of forging checks from the fundraising account set up to help the family with mounting medical bills for Jenna’s treatment, as well as to care for her twin daughters.

Investigators say he took more than $46,000 from the account.

Hinman was already facing a criminal possession of a forged instrument charge when the Sheriff's Office charged him with third-degree grand larceny on Thursday.

In a written confession, Brandon Hinman says his name was not on the account and he did fill out checks to himself and forged the name of Jeff Blaisdell – the fund manager and the girls’ grandfather – to access the money.

While Jenna was in the hospital earlier in the year, several people in the Central New York community and beyond donated money to help with her care.

The money was placed in an account set up by Blaisdell, along with Brandon’s sister, Lindsey Clark.

In March, court documents indicate that Jenna’s mother, Kimberly Blaisdell, said she was opening checks for the fundraising account while she was in the privacy room at the hospital.

She handed Brandon the checks and asked for them back, but he allegedly refused to return them.

Then, on May 9, the family learned that checks were being written on the fundraising account and had not been authorized by either of the account managers.

After Brandon Hinman was questioned, he said he had taken the money and “put it away, and would prove it to the family when the time was right.”

He later confessed to forging the checks, according to court documents.

The fundraising account was closed on May 12 and the family says the twins currently have no insurance.

A Fort Drum spokesperson said  that, as of July 2, Hinman was no longer a member of the US military.

The Hinman twins’ trust fund is still open and Jenna’s parents are the only ones with access to it.

They say a GoFundMe account was not compromised.

Hinman was arrested on Tuesday afternoon for the initial charge. He posted bail that night.

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