Unlicensed Social Worker Pleads Guilty in Talbot
and Anne Arundel Counties
BALTIMORE, MD (August 2, 2007) - Maryland Attorney General Douglas
F. Gansler announced today that Jennifer Mast Rinehart of Cordova,
Maryland, pled guilty
in the Circuit Courts for Talbot County and Anne Arundel County to charges
that she practiced social work without a license while employed
for the Departments
of Social Services in these counties. Talbot County Circuit Court Judge Sidney
S. Campen sentenced Rinehart to a 60 day suspended sentence, two years of supervised
probation, and 100 hours of community service. Anne Arundel County Circuit
Court Judge William C. Mulford, II sentenced Rinehart to another
concurrent 60 day
suspended sentence, $500 fine, and one year unsupervised probation.
to facts discovered through the State’s investigation,
Rinehart went to work for the Anne Arundel County Department of
Social Services in January, 1994 while she attended graduate school
at the University of Maryland School of Social Work. After graduating
in May, 2002, she gave her supervisors a copy of what she purported
to be her Maryland license to practice social work. Believing that
the license was authentic, the Anne Arundel County Department of
Social Services promoted her in June, 2003 to the position of Social
Worker II, a position requiring a valid Maryland graduate social
7, 2006, Rinehart transferred to the Talbot County Department
of Social Services where she practiced social work.
After only a few days, the Talbot County DSS personnel director
checked the authenticity of the license and learned that Rinehart
had never been licensed to practice social work at any level by
the Board of Social Work Examiners. Rinehart was discharged from
her position on August 22, 2006.
An investigation by the Board of Social Work Examiners revealed
that the licenses submitted by Ms. Rinehart to both the Anne Arundel
County and Talbot County Departments of Social Services were fraudulent.
The case was prosecuted by the Criminal Division of the Attorney
General’s Office. In making today’s announcement,
Attorney General Gansler thanked Assistant Attorney General Kate
O’Donnell for her work on the case.