Crime

Georgetown Man Arrested For Exploitation Of A Vulnerable Adult And Fraud

South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson announced that his office’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (SCMFCU), with assistance from the Georgetown Police Department, has arrested Michael McKnight, 60 years old, of Georgetown, SC for Exploitation of a Vulnerable Adult {43-35-0085 (D)} and Breach of Trust with Fraudulent Intent, the value of $10,000 or more {16-13-230 (B)(3)}. McKnight was booked into the Georgetown County Detention Center on March 10th, 2022.

An SCMFCU investigation revealed that between the dates of February 21, 2018, and October 19, 2019, McKnight, as the victim’s power of attorney, willfully made with fraudulent intent unlawful and improper use of the victim’s funds and assets. The victim, a vulnerable adult under South Carolina law, resided at Prince George Health and Rehabilitation Center in Georgetown during the time of the alleged misconduct.

The Exploitation of a Vulnerable Adult is a felony and, upon conviction, has a penalty of up to five years in prison, a fine up to $5,000, or both. Breach of Trust with Fraudulent Intent, value $10,000 or more, is also a felony and, upon conviction, has a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a fine at the discretion of the court.

Pursuant to federal regulations, the SCMFCU has authority over Medicaid provider fraud; abuse and neglect of Medicaid beneficiaries in any setting; and the abuse, neglect, and exploitation of individuals residing in assisted living facilities or nursing homes.

Attorney General Wilson stressed all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they are proven guilty in a court of law.

The SCMFCU receives 75 percent of its funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under a grant award totaling $1,927,636 for the Federal fiscal year 2022. The remaining 25 percent, totaling $642,544 for FY 2022, is funded by South Carolina.

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