‘Massive’ theft from Aspen doctor/sister leads to jail, probation
June 20, 2018
The sister of a doctor at a local women’s clinic who admitted to stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the business while serving as office manager was sentenced Monday to 90 days in jail and six years of probation.
While calling her crime “deplorable” and admitting to a “spending addiction,” Shannon Nagle, 52, asked to be spared jail time because she said it would negatively affect her progress combatting a painful neurological disorder.
“I feel like I’ve already been serving time for what I’ve done,” she said, which has included shame and being socially ostracized. “I’ve fully assumed responsibility for my crimes.”
District Judge Chris Seldin, however, declined to grant the request.
“Punitive sanctions are absolutely demanded by this type of behavior,” Seldin said, noting that Pitkin County Jail personnel can effectively deal with medical issues. “(This is) repeated and willful embezzlement from your employer and sister.
“It’s a remarkable case, really. I haven’t seen anything quite like it.”
Seldin noted that he was only able to give Nagle a maximum of 90 days in jail under her plea agreement, but said he likely would have given her more time behind bars if he could have.
Nagle previously pleaded guilty to one felony count of theft between $100,000 and $1 million.
Nagle — whose older sister of Dr. Melinda Nagle of the All Valley Women’s Care clinic at Aspen Valley Hospital — admitted to police she’d been stealing from the business since being named office manager in 2010. However, she was only charged with thefts she committed between July 2015 and December 2016, when an Aspen police detective determined she stole $663,000 from the clinic.
Nagle allegedly used four credit cards issued to the clinic to buy clothing, airplane tickets, hotel vacations, car repairs, horse accessories, horse boarding fees, horse saddles and groceries, among other things, according to court documents filed in the case.
Public defender Tina Fang told Seldin that Shannon Nagle’s theft stemmed “100 percent from compulsive behavior associated with her anorexia disorder,” and that she’d returned about $110,000 worth of cash and jewelry to the women’s clinic.
Still, Nagle will have to pay back $570,703 in restitution to the business under terms of the plea deal.
“The notion that full restitution will ever be provided in connection with this case is probably mythological,” Seldin said.
Prosecutor Don Nottingham said there had been talk of the victims not asking for any restitution in the case, which he called “a ridiculous and offensive idea.” He called Nagle’s crime “a massive amount of theft.”
No one from the clinic — including Melinda Nagle — attended Monday’s sentencing. Nottingham, however, said Melinda Nagle did not want her sister sent to prison, which contributed to his decision not to ask for prison time Monday.
Shannon Nagle was taken to jail after Monday’s sentencing. In addition to the six years’ probation, she will have to perform 48 hours of community service, work out a payment schedule for paying back the money and write an apology letter to her victims.