Melissa Barton asked for cancer donations and got them. Then she asked for mercy and got it. Then she asked for even more mercy — boy, did the judge ever give it to her.
Barton faked cancer and lied about her child having cancer to get donations. She made tearful videos that almost made Madison County Circuit Judge Kyle Napp cry even when she knew they were fake.
After Barton was caught, she made a deal and in late July was sentenced to 18 months on a charge related to duping people and probation on a charge of taking from a church. She was also given time to get her affairs in order before going to prison.
She wasn’t happy with the deal, asked for probation on everything, and then she didn’t show up for prison. The judge issued a warrant for her arrest. Then the judge did reconsider the sentence and gave her an extra six months in prison.
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Barton’s public defender kept trying to use Barton’s manic depression, panic disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder as an excuse or a shield.
But the judge wasn’t buying, and few would.
How can you be so immobilized by your demons that you can’t show up for prison, but you are crafty enough to rally a community to give you money for a disease you and your child do not have?
As we said before, Barton’s real sin is creating mistrust of those who really need help with the physical, emotional and financial devastations of cancer. We’re not shedding any tears because she will have two years instead of 18 months to ponder the wrongs she’s done.