June 12, 2002
Sean Caine, 410-576-6357
CATHOLIC CHARITIES CASEWORKER
SENTENCED FOR STEALING OVER $73,000 FROM THREE
VULNERABLE ADULT CLIENTS
General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that former Associated
Catholic Charities caseworker Dorothy Moore Williams, 52, was sentenced
to serve five years in prison, with all but two years suspended,
five years probation, and pay restitution in the amount of
$54,000 to the two remaining victims, as the third victim died intestate
before charges were filed. Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Joseph
McCurdy ordered that Williams surrender herself into custody of
the Court on June 25.
was convicted of stealing over $73,000 from three of her vulnerable
adult clients, when she pleaded guilty to taking the money from
her clients bank accounts between 1998 and 2000 while she
was appointed to manage their finances. Each of the victims had
been referred to Catholic Charities by Adult Protective Services,
which had determined that they were so mentally disabled as to be
unable to manage their finances.
of Southall Rd. in Randallstown, also admitted to stealing thousands
of dollars from two credit card companies by misusing the credit
cards of Sara Webster, one of her vulnerable clients from whom she
also stole $41,000.
Nelson came under Williams care in early 1998, when her home
was condemned and she was no longer able to care for herself. Williams
had herself appointed representative payee over Nelsons social
security disability payments, giving her complete control over that
money. She also closed out Mrs. Nelsons savings accounts and
transferred the money into an account which she controlled. Finally,
she intercepted Mrs. Nelsons pension checks and diverted them
for her benefit. The total amount stolen from Mrs. Nelson was $19,000.
Webster, 76, severely mentally disabled, and suffering from advanced
dementia and Alzheimers Disease, came under Williams
care in 1999, after Adult Protective Services had made a finding
that she was being exploited by unscrupulous neighbors who had gained
access to her checkbook. Williams consolidated her control over
Websters accounts and spent the money for her own benefit,
on such things as car payments, credit card debt and catalog shopping
for herself. The total amount stolen from Ms. Webster was $41,000.
During the same time period, Williams added herself to two of Ms.
Websters credit cards, on which she ran up nearly $14,000
in personal expenditures for which she never paid.
third victim, Adeline Massoni, came under the defendants care
when she was released from a mental institution and was living in
a homeless shelter. Williams gained control over Massonis
disability payments and stole over $12,000 between 1999 and 2000.
During that time period, Massoni, 59, received three sizeable retroactive
payments from Social Security totaling over $15,000, but Williams
never told her about the windfall.
Williams is going to jail for two years because of her sinister
behavior," Attorney General Curran said. "She and her
behavior give a black eye to the many people who provide caring
support to those who suffer due to old age, poor health, and other
unfortunate circumstances. Ms. Williams should hope she is not so
unfortunate as to have a person such as herself care for her in
her later years."
case stems from an earlier theft case prosecuted by the Attorney
General, involving a social worker at Catholic Charities who pleaded
guilty to stealing over $14,000 from eight vulnerable adult clients.
Wanda Wilson, 53, was sentenced last year to nine months in jail
for her conduct. Her thefts were discovered by personnel at Catholic
Charities, who referred the matter to authorities. In reviewing
the accounts over which Wanda Wilson had authority, they noticed
some suspicious checks to Williams, who had some of the same clients.
The Attorney Generals Office and the Inspector Generals of
the State Department of Human Resources and the Social Security
Administration jointly investigated the matter.