Ethics panel charges ex-social worker

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - The Executive Branch Ethics Commission has issued an ethics charge against a former social worker who pleaded guilty earlier to tampering with public records when she was employed investigating allegations of child abuse and neglect for the state.

The Lexington Herald-Leader ( ) reports the commission said Monday that it found probable cause during a preliminary investigation that Margaret "Geri" Murphy failed to fulfill her state job duties while receiving wages and benefits.

Commission Executive Director John Steffen said the charge is only that and not a final ruling. Steffen says Murphy may defend herself if she chooses.

The 61-year-old Murphy pleaded guilty May 22 in Anderson County Circuit Court in connection with her job with the state Cabinet for Health and Family Services. She is to be sentenced July 24.

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