Has Sportscaster Don Tollefson Been Defrauding People for Drug Money?

The sports anchor checked himself into an inpatient care facility this week following theft accusations.


UPDATE: Don Tollefson has been arrested.


Sportscaster Don Tollefson has checked himself into an inpatient care facility following allegations that he has been defrauding folks of their cash in an apparent charity scam. He released the following statement via Action News last evening:

In recent months, the programs I have conducted for disadvantaged children have encountered financial challenges. As a result, we have needed to cancel trips and other prize packages and for that I greatly apologize to our generous donors who have taken such a great interest in these wonderful children. In the coming months, we hope to fulfill our obligations, resume our programs and make things right for our donors. I am currently receiving treatment at an inpatient facility. After I am discharged, I will fully address all of the above issues. I am truly sorry for any inconvenience and anxiety caused by these circumstances. Please respect my family’s privacy while I resolve these issues.

[Listen: Here’s Don Tollefson’s voicemail]

No official word on if drugs were to blame for Tollefson’s inpatient admission, but with Warminster police investigating dozens of fraud complaints against him, there are at least a few benefactors wondering what happened to their donations.

Tollefson reportedly was in a major car accident around 2 years ago, an incident that friend Bill Osborn says caused this whole situation in the first place. Whether that is through a drug addiction developed to cope with pain or physical infirmity as a result of the accident is not clear:

“I know if that hadn’t happened, this probably wouldn’t have happened,” Osborn said.

Though, there is that whole ticket thing:

“I became a little suspicious, and, actually, I became a little worried for him because it wasn’t the Tolley that I knew and loved. He was a good guy, and he just wasn’t acting like himself,” Osborn said.

The first sign something was wrong was when the expensive lower-level and sideline tickets Osborn purchased for charity turned out to be seats in the nosebleed section.

The charities Tollefson supposedly was donating money to include Wounded Warriors and a number of children’s charities, though the cash never made its way over. [ABC]

UPDATE: Tollefson is now being taken to court over Super Bowl tickets.

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  • Ryan


  • Meterhead

    Where’s the FBI? They went after Larry Mendte for looking at the email of a train wreck who was trying to get him fired. And this guy uses a children’s charity to bilk money from donations and no raid. Guess Tolly doesn’t get the headlines.

    • JofreyRice

      Agreed, and Jerry Pensacoli was investigated for his…incident.

  • Henry

    it’s true, as a result of his car accident, Tolly has a painkiller drug problem. This does not excuse the delay in the refunding of folks monies. I just hope he returns our moines and tell the public about his health issues–perhaps folks will then forgive him.

  • BC1968

    Lying asshole, this goes way back further than two years ago. What a phony jerk.

  • DrewShervin

    This is not true at all. Howard Eskin reported on his radio show today that Tollefson has been doing this stuff allegedly for 10 years. The in-patient story is just to create sympathy. Too many people are coming out with stories with alleged impropriety. Where there is smoke, there is fire. Don like many others has been using charities to benefit his own life. You only have to divert a small portion of money to the charities to escape the law, the rest of the money can be designated as administrative expenses.
    That is Don’s salary and he can pay himself anything he wants. Ask yourself how the people who run ministries and charities live such high lives. Expensive cars, beautiful homes, lavish vacations. None of these people are Mother Theresa.

    • D

      You had me until the end. I run a non-profit organization (about a $1m budget) and drive a 12 year-old car, live in a small, rented, 2-bedroom rowhome that needs some repair work, and my only vacation this year is a 3-day camping trip. I live 100% paycheck-to-paycheck. Let’s resist the urge to generalize about all people who head charities.

      • pjbthree

        But you are not a celebrity. Drew is referring to the celebrities that do this

    • pjbthree

      Howard Eskin is not a reliable authority, particularly when it comes to other sportscasters

  • Paul earthquake Moore

    Don let not your heart be trouble its. Going. Be Ok your friend Rev Paul earthquake Moore

  • ljabarr

    Don Tollefson will be up all night nervous and sweating knowing that Bubba is trying to get lucky.

  • to0bad4u

    I’m inclined to believe Howard Eskin. He’s in a good spot right now. He wouldn’t jeopardize it with slander. If he has said anything untrue then you could be sure he will lose his position over it.