Albuquerque doctor accused of shoplifting repeatedly from Target
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A high-ranking UNM Medical Group doctor is accused of shoplifting hundreds of dollars worth of products from a local Target – more than once.
Albuquerque police arrested Melissa Ivers last month after loss prevention staff said they caught her.
Ivers is the associate chief medical officer for UNM Medical Group. She was arrested for shoplifting more than $1,000 but she won’t be facing jail time.
Lapel video from Albuquerque police shows Ivers getting busted for shoplifting and escorted back inside the Target on Coors.
According to the criminal complaint, it wasn’t the first time she stole from that store. A loss prevention employee from the store told officers she had stolen from them three times within one month.
On Nov. 11, the employee says Ivers made off with $595 worth of merchandise. On Nov. 28, Ivers reportedly left with $132 worth of merchandise. On Dec. 6, Ivers’ cart was worth $173.
All three times, the employee says Ivers just walked past checkout and headed straight for the exit.
APD was aware of the situation and had three cases open, but they couldn’t track down who she was until Dec. 13 – when they caught her in the act. On that day, she was attempting to steal $210 worth of merchandise.
On Thursday, Assistant District Attorney Clair Gardner told the court she was dropping the case because instead of jail time, Ivers will attend a pre-prosecution diversion program.
The district attorney’s office told KOB 4 Ivers was chosen for the program because this is her first arrest.
The program is supervised by the DA’s office and participants have to check in with a PPD officer regularly. If they successfully complete the program, the charges are dismissed. If they don’t, then the DA’s office will prosecute the charges normally.
Ivers has been a part of UNM since her residency in 2009. According to the UNM Sunshine Portal, she makes more than $286,000 a year. Ivers also works at High Country Dental in Rio Rancho.
Ivers has been on paid administrative leave since she self-reported the charges to UNM leadership.
Chris Ramirez, communications director at UNM Health and Health Sciences, shared the following statement:
“UNM’s leadership is aware of the situation with Dr. Melissa Ivers. She has been placed on administrative leave while we follow the appropriate procedures and processes.”
The Office of the Second Judicial District Attorney shared the following statement:
“She was sent to the Pre-Prosecution Diversion Program because this is her first arrest. PPD is basically pre-prosecution probation. It is supervised by our office. Participants must check in with their PPD officer regularly, they are drug tested, and must attend any counseling deemed necessary, get a job or go to school, and pay restitution if there is any needed. If they successfully complete the charges their case is dismissed. If they do not successfully complete then we prosecute charges as normal.”