Michael Slager’s fundraiser, which at one point had $1,380 in pledges, has been deleted from IndieGoGo. The fundraising site said that Slager’s campaign did not meet their standards.
After Michael Slager was charged with the murder of Walter Scott, someone purporting to be his defense team attempted to begin a fundraiser on GoFundMe, and was refused. They then turned instead to IndieGoGo, which hosted the fundraiser for a time. The crowdfunding site immediately began receiving requests for Slager’s fundraiser to be removed.
Though the fundraiser was described as being started by “Michael Slager Defense Team,” grammatical errors in the text led many to question whether it was even official.
Whether the Slager fund was started by his defense team, fellow officers, friends, or someone else trying to cash in, it didn’t stay up long. As of Friday, it has been removed, and navigating to its former location returns only this image:
According to CNet, IndieGoGo released a statement saying that the fundraiser had been removed for unspecified violations of the site’s terms of service.
The person behind the Michael Slager crowdfunding campaign, and social media accounts of the same name, posted to Facebook on Wednesday, calling GoFundMe’s refusal to host the campaign “cowardice.”
The Facebook page supporting Slager bears numerous other posts, some racially charged, and others merely expressing support for police. They include “Blue Lives Matter” memes, op-eds condemning Al Sharpton, and links to stories of police being attacked, with comments suggesting that, because police do a dangerous job, any shooting is justified and in self-defense.
Though the founders of the Michael Slager defense fund were vocal about GoFundMe’s refusal, they have not yet addressed the removal of Slager’s fund from the IndieGoGo site.
Darren Wilson’s fundraising campaign was similarly removed from crowdfunding sites, but not until it had netted a quarter of a million dollars.
Despite the racially charged posts on the Facebook page, the Michael Slager Defense Fund’s Twitter account maintains that it is only seeking justice.
We do not or will not support ANY criminal activity!! We are only lobbying for competent council and a fair trial.
— MichaelSlagerDefense (@DefendMichaelS) April 9, 2015
Slager’s original defense council reportedly quit after viewing the video taken by a bystander. That video is below, but be warned of graphic content that could be disturbing.
The video appears to contradict Michael Slager’s initial statement that he was forced to shoot Walter Scott in a scuffle over his taser. A crowdfunding page for Walter Scott’s family is here.
[Photo by Charleston County Detention Center via Getty Images]