Breckenridge man arrested after stealing $44,000 from golf club

Ryan Mahlstadt, 31, a former Breckenridge Golf Club employee was arrested after stealing more than $44,000 from the club.
Summit County Sheriff’s Office

A Breckenridge Golf Club employee is facing felony charges after stealing more than $40,000 from the town-run golf course, according to court records.

Ryan Mahlstadt, 31, who is listed in the arrest affidavit as an assistant golf pro at Breckenridge Golf Club, was arrested earlier this month after an investigation into abnormal financial activity at the golf course revealed he made a number of fraudulent refunds into his own pocket.

Breckenridge Town Clerk Helen Cospolich, who is currently serving as the town’s spokesperson, said the town couldn’t comment on an active police investigation or personnel matters.

The investigation began Aug. 31 at the request of Breckenridge Town Manager Rick Holman, after the town’s finance and golf-operations teams discovered discrepancies between credit card payments and accounts receivable reported in the club’s point-of-sale software called GolfNow, according to the arrest affidavit.

Before the police got involved, an internal investigation was already underway between staff at the golf club and the town’s finance department, which learned from GolfNow that more than $44,000 in refunds were funneled into an account without any corresponding purchases. Upon further review, one of the transactions had Mahlstadt’s name on it.

Later that day, police received a call from a golf club employee saying that he’d spoken with Mahlstadt, who admitted to stealing the money and voiced his intention to turn himself in at the Breckenridge Police Department the following day. Mahlstadt made good on that promise, according to the affidavit, arriving at the department at 10 a.m. Sept. 1 to confess to detectives.

Mahlstadt told police that he began refunding his credit card for purchases that never happened toward the end of the 2020 golf season, noting that he would “just make up an amount based on the cost of a round of golf” and that he was refunding between $1,000 and $2,000 to his card on a weekly basis using computers at the clubhouse, according to the affidavit.

Mahlstadt is currently facing felony and misdemeanor theft charges along with a felony cybercrime charge.

During an interview with the Summit Daily News on Wednesday, Sept. 22, Mahlstadt’s attorney J.B. Katz confirmed that his client already confessed to the crime and has plans to make amends as soon as possible, including reimbursing the town for all the money he stole.

Mahlstadt is yet to be formally convicted, but Katz said she’s working with the district attorney’s office in hopes of coming to a resolution in the case during Mahlstadt’s appearance on bond currently scheduled for Oct. 13 at the Summit County Justice Center in Breckenridge. She noted that he intends to make full monetary restitution on that day, as well.

“He is extremely sorry,” Katz said. “He wants to apologize to the town and the town as a community that he violated their trust. He’s going to be making full restitution at his court date, paying it back in full.”

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