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Morrison woman pleads guilty to felony theft

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By Corinne Westeman

A Morrison woman and former Evergreen Physical Therapy Specialists employee has pleaded guilty to one count of felony theft for buying approximately $3,000 worth of personal items using the company’s credit cards.

Sue Ann Olson, 58, pleased guilty in district court on Nov. 20. She was granted a two-year diversion program and was ordered to pay restitution.

Olson had been an employee of Evergreen Physical Therapy Specialists for more than 13 years. The arrest affidavit stated Olson used EPTS’ company credit cards to order and ship items to her home, and then altered the original receipts when she copied them at work.

According to Jeffco District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Pam Russell, diversion programs can be granted to first-time non-violent offenders.

In addition to having paid restitution, Olson will be supervised by a diversion officer, must maintain full-time employment, will be drug-tested and participate in a women’s group.

If she complies with the terms and conditions of her diversion contract, her case will be dismissed, Russell said.

“(Diversion) is a great opportunity for someone to have,” Russell said. “It’s a way for ... offenders to learn to make different choices and move forward without additional offenses.”

According to the arrest affidavit, Olson was charged with a one count of felony theft — a class 6 felony, the lowest level — and three counts of forgery regarding a check. The three forgery counts were later dismissed, Russell said.

The offenses were reportedly on or between Dec. 1, 2014 and June 28, 2016. The felony complaint against Olson was filed on May 23, and she was issued a felony summons. Her first court appearance was on June 28.

Arrest affidavit

According to the affidavit, EPTS employees became suspicious when they found an altered receipt in the office copier. Pieces of paper taped over the receipt changed what had been purchased and the recipient’s name and address.

Further investigation by a Jeffco sheriff’s deputy found additional purchases from Amazon and Walmart that Olson made using EPTS’ credit cards, which weren’t purchases for the business and were sent to Olson’s home address.

In total, Olson had $3,341.29 in personal purchases on EPTS’ credit cards, all of which she paid back as restitution.

Both EPTS co-owners John May and Patty McCord said they encourage local businesses to have a good system of checks and balances in their financial systems, especially for employees who handle money, regardless of their seniority.

“It’s pretty common, but it took us by complete and utter shock,” McCord said. “ … Sometimes you don’t know people.”