Q13 FOX Season of Giving

Police now investigating local woman accused of faking cancer to raise money

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SEATTLE - Seattle police have opened a fraud investigation into a local woman accused of faking cancer to raise money.

Tracy Dart`s fight against breast cancer launched her into local stardom, the face of resilience who battled breast cancer three times.

But now there are allegations she lied about the whole thing.

Seattle police say after several complaints from the community, detectives have launched a criminal investigation.

Many local businesses and charity organizations have worked with Dart over the years.

“Shock - I mean it was like we were living an episode of Dateline, 60 Minutes,” said Matthew Welch, the owner of Auburn Volkswagen.

Welch is one of many who helped Dart -the dealership donated a Beetle for the three-day Race for the Cure walk.

He never expected to get a call from members of Dart`s team revealing she allegedly lied.

“She said she doesn`t have cancer," Welch said. "We said 'praise God she’s healed.' The next words were 'she`s never had cancer.' That completely took us by surprise."

Dart and her 15 member team coined 'Team Tracy' directly raised more than $400,000 for the Susan G Komen foundation.

“I hope this isn't a step back for Susan G. Komen or breast cancer awareness,” Welch said.

The corporate office for Susan G. Komen told Q13 News that they were contacted by a family member about the allegations. They released a statement which reads in part:

“We are sad for Tracy and her family and hope that she, and they, will find healing in the days ahead.  The Team Tracy community has been a steadfast supporter of our mission to end breast cancer since 2006. We can assure the community that Tracy did not receive any funds from Komen. Our records show that Tracy personally raised $28,541 for Komen starting in 2006, and that her Seattle and California teams raised more than $414,000 since 2006. This money has been used as intended - for Komen's research and community health programs.”

The group says they were contacted by detectives and plans to cooperate with the fraud investigation.

Welch says he is still grateful for Team Tracy as for the woman at the center of the allegations.

“She needs help mentally, physically, psychological, its awful,” Welch said.

Welch says he is not angry with Dart but says he feels bad for cancer patients who now have to hear someone under investigation accused of faking the illness.