Man accused of posing as social worker, taking money

Photo Credit: Photo courtesy:Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WACH, AP) -- A 45-year-old Columbia man is accused of posing as a social worker and taking the money of seven vulnerable adults in two homes.

Columbia Police Chief Randy Scott said Monday that Mitchell Smith is charged with unauthorized practice as a social worker. It was unclear if he has an attorney.

A police report accuses Smith of taking control of the victims' money, food and any identification, claiming to be their social worker. Police say they arrested Smith over the weekend.

Seven adults were placed into emergency protective custody with the Department of Social Services. They included two military veterans.

The report says officers discovered 3 feet of water in the basement of one home, with water rising over the electric heating unit. Firefighters cut off the power and water for safety.

Police say the investigation continues.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)