Woman in nurse impostor case released pending fraud trial

2013-06-27T16:10:00Z 2014-06-06T13:32:16Z Woman in nurse impostor case released pending fraud trialBy CLAIR JOHNSON cjohnson@billingsgazette.com The Billings Gazette

A federal judge on Thursday released from custody Angela Corson Smith, a Billings woman indicted on bank and wire fraud charges and suspected of impersonating a nurse at Billings Clinic.

During a brief detention hearing Thursday afternoon, U.S. Magistrate Judge Carolyn Ostby agreed to release Smith, 32, pending trial but imposed two additional conditions to the standard conditions as requested by the prosecutor.

Ostby ordered Smith not to open any new lines of credit or to change credit without approval of her pre-trial supervising officer.

The judge also prohibited Smith from going onto the properties of St. Vincent Healthcare and of Billings Clinic without approval from her supervisor unless there is a medical emergency. She also ordered Smith to have no contact with any of the victims or witnesses unless exceptions were cleared through her supervisor.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Fehr asked for the additional restrictions because of the fraud charges and because Smith is suspected of having impersonated a nurse at Billings Clinic.

Assistant Federal Defender Steve Babcock said Smith would be living with her parents and had nowhere else to go.

Smith’s only comment during the hearing was to acknowledge that if she violated release conditions, she would go back jail.

Secret Service agents, assisted by the Billings police, arrested Smith on Tuesday on a warrant at her parents’ home in Billings. She pleaded not guilty later that day to an eight-count indictment during an arraignment before Ostby.

Smith is charged with bank and wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and making false statements to a bank for a series of alleged schemes from 2009 to January 2013 in which she lied about her health, family and work to get tens of thousands of dollars from a credit union and individuals.

A jury trial is set for Aug. 6 before Senior U.S. District Judge Sam Haddon. Smith faces a maximum of 30 years’ imprisonment and a possible $1 million fine if convicted of the bank fraud and false statement charges.

In a separate, more recent case, the Yellowstone County Attorney’s Office is investigating possible state charges stemming from reports that Smith posed as a nurse at Billings Clinic.

The investigation began after The Billings Gazette reported in late April that St. Vincent Healthcare has sent its employees a memo warning that a woman had been posing as a nurse at Billings Clinic. The memo identified Smith as the impostor and said that she had claimed at various times to be a physician assistant student, a nurse practitioner student, a neonatal intensive care unit nurse and the director of nursing.



Copyright 2014 The Billings Gazette. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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