Colorado Springs woman accused of embezzling had ‘noticeable’ change in lifestyle


A Colorado Springs woman pleaded not guilty Monday to charges she embezzled more than $56,000 from the doctor’s office where she had worked for a decade.

Michelle Lisanne Reynolds, 34, was scheduled for trial April 12 on charges of theft, tax evasion and filing a false tax return, all felonies.

She could face between 4-12 years in prison on the most serious of her theft charges. The other charges carry potential prison sentences of 1-3 years each.

Investigators allege Reynolds stole the cash while serving as office administrator at Strode Family Practice in Colorado Springs, operated by Dr. Lloyd Strode and his wife Catherine Strode until its sale to the University of Colorado Health in January 2014.

Reynolds, who was hired by the Strodes in 2004, stayed on after the sale. She was fired by UC Health in November 2014 after unauthorized credit card payments were made to Reynold’s child’s dentist, Colorado Springs police said in an arrest affidavit.

The suspicious activity launched a 7-month investigation that turned up a slew of fraudulent transactions, including online shopping and weekly purchases of groceries and gas totaling $12,000.

Catherine Strode later told police the thefts came during a period when she had “noticed a change in Ms. Reynolds’ lifestyle” that included the purchase of a Cadillac, a breast augmentation and a flashy diamond ring.

Reynolds is free on $10,000 bond and will next appear for a motions hearing on Feb. 22.

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