2 charged via warrant for theft of Pokémon cards valued at nearly $150,000

Washington County court officials are charging two suspects with burglarizing a Forest Lake business that saw more than 2,800 Pokémon cards and merchandise stolen, leaving Punch Out Gaming with a $147,278 loss.

The criminal complaint names Matthew James Cuypers Jr., 40, and Dustin Anthony Wittern also 40, as the two people accused of cutting through a wall to gain entry into the store.

Police say they responded to the initial burglary report on the morning of Feb. 10, 2022.

Investigators say the suspects forced entry into a next door unit, cut their way through the drywall and made entry into the gaming store through the bathroom and storeroom, according to the complaint.

Surveillance camera footage shows one of the suspects enter the storage area, realize there was a camera and then cover the camera with tape.

The criminal complaint states that Cuypers admitted to stealing the cards in a post Miranda interview during an unrelated federal investigation. He also admitted to working with Wittern, who reportedly knew a buyer for the cards. Cuypers also described the incident as “an inside job.”

Cuypers broke into the business to steal the cards while Wittern stayed outside while sitting in a parked Ford E-350. The complaint states that Cuypers also identified himself in the surveillance footage.

A DNA sample taken from Wittern also matched DNA found on a knife that was recovered from the scene with drywall dust on it, the complaint states.