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A former San Francisco city worker pleaded not guilty Tuesday to stealing private information from more than 3,000 people in the Medi-Cal program, prosecutors said. Prosecutors allege that Shawn Williams, an eligibility worker with the San Francisco Human Services Agency, stole information from thousands of people who were either recipients of or applying for Medi-Cal benefits. During her employment, according to prosecutors, Williams allegedly sent names and Social Security numbers by email from her work computer to her personal computer, and also printed out and took home some Medi-Cal applicants’ confidential information.
District attorney’s office spokeswoman Stephanie Ong Stillman said Williams started taking the information in 2006 and continued despite being reprimanded in 2008. She was fired in March 2009 for performance issues, and sued the city later that year. The lawsuit is still pending, Stillman said. The city’s Human Services Agency investigated the security breach and “has gone to great lengths to notify the people” affected, Stillman said. No fraudulent activity has been reported in connection with the information, she said.
Williams was charged with four felony counts of withholding or concealing stolen property and two misdemeanor counts of possessing confidential information of people who have applied for or have received Medi-Cal benefits, prosecutors said. She pleaded not guilty to the charges and was released on her own recognizance. She will return to court on Jan. 31.
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