You may remember the story of CJ LaFrance, a nine-year-old boy who was welcomed by the Syracuse football program after allegedly being diagnosed with Hogkin’s lymphoma. Well, it turns out that the story was all one big lie and his parents are now facing some serious and disturbing charges. According to a report from Syracuse.com, CJ’s parents, Martin and Jolene LaFrance, have been charged with child endangerment and scheme to defraud.
They are accused of lying about CJ’s cancer in order to get access to the Syracuse football team and also soliciting money. A GoFundMe page set up by the family collected around $3,000 from donors.
The report states:
Deputies, acting on a tip, discovered that Martin and Jolene LaFrance solicited money under the guise that their son, CJ LaFrance, was battling Hodgkin’s lymphoma. After a four-month investigation, the sheriff’s office “conclusively” learned that CJ was never diagnosed with cancer or any other medical condition.
It was just last summer that the Syracuse football program and head coach Dino Babers welcomed CJ to practice and brought him on the field to participate in some 1-on-1 drills with players. It was a feel-good story at the time, with his parents claiming CJ was a month into an extensive chemotherapy treatment and that he had multiple lymph nodes removed via surgery.
His parents claimed that doctors informed them they were seeing very little progress.
Syracuse.com had previously shared video of LaFrance and Syracuse linebacker Kielan Whitner playing catch on the field before the young kid broke down the huddle.
CJ truly appreciated the welcome from the Orange players, but now we learn of the circumstances that led to the meeting and its unfortunate that his parents made a sick, twisted lie for their own gain.
The LaFrances will be arraigned May 16.