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Menlo Park: Twin sister psychologists plead no contest to theft of public funds

 

Two psychologists with offices in Menlo Park and a practice of providing therapy at public expense for victims of violent crime entered pleas of no contest on Thursday, June 9, to one count each of felony theft of public funds, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office.

Psychologists Lorie Palmer and Marlie Palmer of San Francisco, 39 years old and twin sisters, have been accused of billing the state's Victim Compensation fund, through the District Attorney's Office, for more than $27,000 each for therapeutic sessions that did not take place.

The no-contest pleas were in exchange for sentences of no more than a year in the county jail, prosecutors said. Prosecutors say they were seeking sentences of up to two years in state prison.

Both women are out of custody on bail of $100,000 each. A sentencing hearing is set for Aug. 10.

A state audit of the Palmer sisters' claims for payment revealed two years of over-billing: Marlie Palmer by $27,136 and Lorie Palmer by $27,648, prosecutors said.

— Dave Boyce

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