Washington mental health counselor LaVerne Jones suspended for sending nude cellphone pics to client

On April 8, 2010, the Washington State Department of Health (DoH) suspended the registration of registered counselor LaVerne Jones for a period of at least two years, during which he has no right to seek reinstatement of his credential.

According to the DoH document, Jones provided counseling services to “Client A” in both an inpatient and outpatient setting between February and August 2008.  In September and November of that year, the client attended “transition services” through the facility where she was receiving treatment.  Transition service included the client’s participation in Narcotics/Alcoholics Anonymous (NA/AA).  During this period, Jones and the client communicated with each through personal cell phone calls and text messages.  One such message Jones sent the client contained two nude photographs of himself holding his erect penis.  Also during this period, Jones went to the client’s residence and visited with the client for approximately one hour.

In November 2008, the client attended a NA/AA meeting with other clients from the treatment center.  During the meeting, the client showed the nude photos of Jones to other clients in attendance.

On or about September 11, 2009, Jones was convicted of Assault in the 4th Degree, a gross misdemeanor, in Yakima County, Case No. 09-1-00684-4.

Source: Stipulated Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law and Agreed Order in the Matter of Laverne J. Jones, credential no. RC00044067, case no. M2009-819, Washington Department of Health Secretary of Health, April 8, 2010.

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