Jami Toler, 27, allegedly raised $8,000 in donations on the premise she suffered from breast cancer and needed the money for a double mastectomy.
KTVK-TV, Phoenix, reported Toler's friends called the police once they realized her story didn't add up.
"We did a lot of research before we even spoke about it to each other and wanted to make sure we had out facts straight," said Casey Carter, formerly friends with Toler.
Carter, along with Carmen Klemis, another friend of Toler's, investigated before going to police.
"When we were able to locate the physician that did the procedure that was kind of icing on the cake and really validated that thought we had," Carter said.
Police said Toler never had cancer.
Toler's initial hearing took place Wednesday. She is due to appear in court again next month.