ABC Owned Television Stations is expanding its investigative slate with a trio of December 21 documentaries on Hulu. WPVI Philadelphia premieres No Good Deed: A Crowdfunding Holiday Heist that day, “about what started as a heartwarming 2017 holiday story that turned into the biggest scandal in GoFundMe history,” according to WPVI.
No Good Deed updates viewers about Johnny Bobbitt Jr., a homeless man who gave his last $20 to help a woman, Katelyn McClure, who ran out of gas. McClure created a GoFundMe page to help him out of homelessness. As the story went viral, McClure and her boyfriend, Mark D'Amico, raised around $400,000 for Bobbitt.
But social media posts revealing luxury spending sprees, parties and gambling prompted WPVI investigative reporter Chad Pradelli and Special Projects producer Cheryl Mettendorf to investigate. McClure, D'Amico and Bobbitt were all in on the scam. “A fallout ensued, eventually exposing the Good Deed as a lie that defrauded GoFundMe and thousands of kindhearted supporters,” said WPVI.
Pradelli and Mettendorf are co-executive producers on the hour-long documentary. "Acts of kindness bring out the best in people but this is a story that brought out the worst," said Pradelli.
KTRK Houston releases a new episode from its Texas True Crime series December 21. Texas True Crime: The Candyman Murders is about a case that haunted Houston nearly 50 years ago. ABC13 reporter Jessica Willey revisits Dean Corll, known as the Candyman, who tortured, raped and killed at least 28 boys and young men.
Earlier this year, KTRK released all episodes from Texas True Crime and season two of its Unsolved series on Hulu. There are 13 total documentary episodes.
"Deciding to share these locally produced true-crime stories on Hulu is indicative of the demand we are seeing from viewers who are obsessed with the content," said Wendy Granato, president and general manager of KTRK. "It also speaks to the experience of our reporters, whose work gives a voice to the victims."
Also on December 21, KABC Los Angeles releases Unsolved LA: The Disappearance of Mitrice Richardson on Hulu. It is about a 2009 case involving a young woman who vanished near Malibu Creek State Park.
In the hour-long special, KABC’s Veronica Miracle looks into the unsolved case. Richardson appeared to have a mental health crisis that led her to county jail before she went missing. “Controversy ensued regarding how she was released in the middle of the night with no phone or car and vanished,” said KABC.
Richardson’s remains were found 11 months later in a canyon. ■
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Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.