Jailed ex-social services worker seeks shock probation

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Murphy could be released from prison Thursday morning

By The Staff

The former social services employee sentenced to five years in prison on nine felony counts of falsifying her investigations is scheduled to return to Circuit Court on Thursday for a shock probation hearing.
Margaret “Geri” Murphy, 61, was sentenced in late July after pleading guilty to a host of felony charges.
At that time, her attorney, Bill Patrick, said he would attempt to have her placed on shock probation after she served the required 30 days in jail.
Murphy is scheduled to appear at 9 a.m. in front of Circuit Court Judge Charles Hickman.
At the time of Murphy’s sentencing, Hickman rejected Patrick’s plea to place her on probation.
“The court is disturbed by the actions, or non-actions, taken in these situations,” Hickman said.
“The children left in these situations were possibly physically or sexually abused, and that could have been prevented.
“The fact that children could be left in the hands of abusers is particularly concerning to this court. Probation is denied.”
The case was prosecuted by Attorney General Jack Conway’s office. Following Murphy’s sentencing, Conway called her actions “unconscionable.”
“Ms. Murphy had a responsibility to investigate allegations of child abuse or neglect and to take action to protect children from these heinous crimes. She failed to execute her duties and to protect Kentucky’s youngest and most vulnerable citizens. The sentence handed down today sends a critical message that damaging the integrity of the cabinet’s system of support for child victims will not be tolerated.”
In at least two of the cases where Murphy falsified reports finding that sexual abuse allegations were unsubstantiated, children were victimized again due to being left in abusive situations, Conway said.
In one case involving a report of sexual abuse of an infant by the mother’s boyfriend, new allegations of sexual abuse against the boyfriend were made after Murphy provided false facts and unsubstantiated the original report of abuse, Conway said.