Kirkland massage therapist charged with theft, fraud and money laundering

Suspect was arrested sometime last week.

A local business owner and licensed massage therapist has been arrested for numerous crimes, according to charging papers.

Jessica Gray owns The Center for Total Body Awareness, located in the 600 block of 4th Avenue in Kirkland. She has been charged with first degree theft, fraudulent insurance claims, money laundering and identity theft in the first degree.

In 2015, Gray entered into a practitioner agreement with Regence Blueshield. It allowed her to bill for services rendered to patients contacted through Regence, court documents state.

But the results of a 2018 audit conducted by Regence found irregular billing practices by Gray that involved the patients of the specific employer group related to the Valve Corporation.

The investigation found that Gray allegedly billed Regence for 382 fraudulent claims — totaling more than $54,000 in payments. Most of the claims were submitted on behalf of 11 Valve clients she serviced.

About 70 percent of the defendant’s income was allegedly paid out by Regence, for Valve employee services. Other evidence suggested the defendant back billed fake sessions.

Investigators found, based on social media, there were occasions when Gray, or the patient, weren’t in the city when the service was reported to have happened.

On June 25, a search warrant was served on Banner Bank for Gray’s business and personal financial records. Authorities discovered that monthly Regence payments were deposited into Gray’s business account and used for expenses.

Interviews with several Valve employees confirmed the investigators’ suspicions. They said Gray had admitted to intentionally inflating the billable hours submitted to Regence.