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Social Services problems: stolen gift cards, thousands in trashed goods

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CBS News reported on Friday an ongoing investigation into the Richmond Department of Social Services has revealed some serious problems

There are now allegations of theft as well as evidence that thousands of dollars worth of resources meant for clients has been thrown in the trash. A city social worker has already admitted to stealing gift cards meant for needy families. This occurred over a five month period, and stopped only after a whistle-blower brought attention to the crime.

A call to the city's Waste, Fraud and Abuse hotline resulted in investigators finding out one of the city's administrative support specialists, had stolen nearly a dozen Wal-mart gift cards worth $1,600 dollars from a safe at the agency’s E. Marshall location.

Monica Davis pleaded guilty to one count of embezzlement before a judge this week. She received a two-year suspended sentence, and has to pay the department back the value of the cards. So far, she has paid $600 back to the department.

It is not known if Davis will lose her job with the city. She is still working, and apparently, everyone is waiting to see what city administration is going to do. It has also been discovered that this is not the first time gift cards have been stolen, either.

In another incident, dating back to 2012, an employee is accused of dumping military cots in a landfill, valued at $15,000. This event occurred when employees were going through storage, removing mildewed supplies, like blankets. Investigators discovered the cots were not mildewed.

It looks like the Department of Social Services is still in a mess, and has a long way to go before anyone would want to trust anything they do. From allegations of leaving children in abusive homes to theft and mismanagement of resources, who can know what will be next.

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