Two Claimants Allegedly Faked Sugarland Stage Collapse Injuries
While dozens were injured in a stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair prior to a scheduled Sugarland concert in August, two alleged victims were reportedly just looking to cash in.
According to the Indianapolis Star, investigators say a pair of women who were not in attendance at the Aug. 13 concert tried to collect funds from the Indiana State Fair Remembrance Fund and the Indiana Tort Claim Fund.
"I do not understand the mentality of someone who would look at the circumstances of that night and see the potential for financial profit from this kind of scheme," Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry told the paper. "Most of us would look at those circumstances and feel sympathy and a desire to help assist the real victims in any way we could."
The women in question, Stephanie Murry and Sandra Hum, now face felony charges including forgery, perjury and attempted theft. They submitted claims for $22,500 from the two funds, which benefit those injured or killed during the tragedy.
Hurn could spend up to 36 years in prison over the case, with Hurn potentially facing 14 years. Hurn reportedly confessed to the money-making plot, telling detectives that Murray stated, "I'm gone play like I was there… I went there anyway -- to the hospital." Murray allegedly stole emergency room forms.
Seven people were killed during the collapse, which was caused by heavy winds.
"We will not stand idly by while greedy individuals take from those who are truly deserving of compensation from this tragedy," Curry told the Star.
Several lawsuits have been filed against Sugarland in the wake of the stage's collapse, including a November suit that included 44 victims. Over $500,000 has been distributed to victims by the State Fair Remembrance Fund.
The band returned to Indianapolis in October to perform a benefit concert attended by several of the collapse's victims.