Banner: Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr.
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For Immediate Release
June 12, 2002
Contact: Sean Caine, 410-576-6357


Attorney 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.

Williams 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.

Williams, 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.

Mildred 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 Nelson’s social security disability payments, giving her complete control over that money. She also closed out Mrs. Nelson’s savings accounts and transferred the money into an account which she controlled. Finally, she intercepted Mrs. Nelson’s pension checks and diverted them for her benefit. The total amount stolen from Mrs. Nelson was $19,000.

Sara Webster, 76, severely mentally disabled, and suffering from advanced dementia and Alzheimer’s 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 Webster’s 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. Webster’s credit cards, on which she ran up nearly $14,000 in personal expenditures for which she never paid.

The third victim, Adeline Massoni, came under the defendant’s care when she was released from a mental institution and was living in a homeless shelter. Williams gained control over Massoni’s 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.

"Dorothy 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."

The 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 General’s Office and the Inspector Generals of the State Department of Human Resources and the Social Security Administration jointly investigated the matter.



Attorney General of Maryland 1 (888) 743-0023 toll-free / TDD: (410) 576-6372
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