COPY-Mom told her son he had cancer and drugged him to make him appear ill, police say

MACOMB COUNTY, MI (CNN) - Prosecutors said a Michigan mom faked her son's cancer to scam people out of thousands of dollars, and that wasn't the worst of it.

Friday the Macomb County mom faced a judge on charges of fraud and child abuse.

Carol Schnuphase is accused of convincing her 12-year-old son Christopher that he was dying of leukemia. Then, she allegedly set up fundraisers to profit from donations.

Prosecutors said Schnuphase shaved the boy's head and eyebrows and may also have drugged her son's applesauce with crushed up tablets, all in an attempt to make him look ill.

"He was found to be cancer free and always had been cancer free," said Macomb Co. Prosecutor Eric Smith. "Then, when they went through their work up on him, they found that he tested positive for opiates and that he was going through opiate withdrawal."

Smith said the boy said the mother crushed up tablets and put them in his applesauce.

The judge has ordered Carol Schnuphase held on a $100,000 bond.  If convicted of the charges against her, she could face up to 14 years in prison.

Christopher Schuphase is now in foster care.

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