Q2 Morning Email Newsletter

Apr 30, 2013 8:09 PM by Dustin Klemann - Q2 News

UPDATE: Person of interest identified in impostor local health care worker investigation

UPDATE: BILLINGS - More information has surfaced about a woman posing as a health care worker here in Billings.

Photos of her in the halls of Billings Clinic were released to local healthcare facilities.

The Billings Police Department is learning more about its next steps and what avenues it can take for the investigation.

BPD's person of interest is Angela Corson-Smith.

Corson-Smith was seen wearing medical scrubs in Billings Clinic.

An internal memo to employees of St. Vincent Healthcare sent out by the hospital's Public Safety department, identified Corson-Smith allegedly masquerading in the hospital.

A complaint about the suspect alerted Billings Police Department last week.

She performed rounds with physicians on a number of occasions during her time at Billings Clinic.

Facebook photos also show Corson-Smith with a Billings Police department sergeant.

Billings Police Chief Rich St. John said the department approached the sergeant and found he has done nothing wrong.

The sergeant told police he was completely unaware of Corson-Smith's alleged actions.

Chief St. John met with the Scott Twito, Yellowstone County Attorney, Tuesday afternoon to discuss the next steps of the investigation.

"We'll also be coordinating with U.S. Attorney's Office because of potential federal violations as well with HIPAA (Health Information Privacy Act) information." Chief St. John continued, "We're taking this very seriously. We're being very thorough and have great cooperation from the hospitals. Obviously they are very concerned about this. We're moving quickly but thoroughly with a coordinated effort with the three agencies."

Q2 spoke with Corson-Smith's attorney, Gregory Johnson, over the phone.

He said he doesn't believe there is any substance to these claims and questioned Billings Clinic's lack of comment on the story.

"The poor young girl's image, reputation, and opportunities are suffering. And her character is being disparaged. She is innocent and being vilified by a source that has no comment."

Corson-Smith has not been arrested nor charged with any crime.

Late Tuesday, Billings Clinic sent a statement regarding the investigation.

Julie Burton, Director of Communications, said:

"Last week Billings Clinic reported an incident to the Billings Police Department involving an unidentified individual who was on Billings Clinic's campus and who had claimed to be a nurse practitioner student. We are working closely with the Billings Police Department and the Yellowstone County Attorney's office to cooperate with their investigation. In a cooperative spirit and in the best interest of patients in our community, we notified St. Vincent Healthcare and RiverStone Health to alert them about the potential risk. We are taking this matter very seriously and have our entire organization on alert pertaining to this situation."

BPD has not determined how long Corson-Smith worked in the hospital.

"We need to find out the depth of the activities and what security areas were breached. We're relatively early in this investigation," said St. John.

He said there is no timetable for the investigation.

BILLINGS - Both Billings hospitals are on alert after a woman allegedly posed as a nurse and infiltrated a local medical facility.

The Billings Police Department is aware of the situation and also has a working knowledge of the individual it believes may be responsible. Billings Police Chief Rich St. John confirms there is a person of interest in the case, but said no arrests have been made.

St. John also said a detective is now working the case and that the department learned of the complaint last week.

News of the woman impostor reached St. Vincent employees through an internal memo to employees sent out by St. Vincent Healthcare Public Safety.

The memo stated the woman in question performed rounds with physicians on a number of occasions during her time at Billings Clinic.

Although her medical background is unknown, according to the memo, she is able to speak like she has experience in a medical capacity.

A public relations employee at St. Vincent's says the woman has not accessed any medical records at the hospital.

Meanwhile, the Billings Clinic says all questions pertaining to the case are being forwarded to the Billings Police Department.

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