Two suspects arrested for car wash robbery
Two suspects from Rochester, MN have been arrested after officers were dispatched to a report of stolen monies from a car wash coin box in Tomah.
On Jan. 4, at approximately 10:30 a.m., officers were dispatched to Thunderwash Car Wash where an employee told officers he had checked the surveillance cameras and realized all the self service car wash bay cameras had been pushed toward the ceiling.
When the employee arrived at the car wash, he found the padlocks on the money boxes had been cut and the money had been stolen from all three bays. He estimated a total of $500 to $700 worth of quarters were stolen from all three bays.
According to the complaint, a lock pin and the three padlocks were also missing. A similar theft had occurred back in November 2019 at a different car wash in Tomah.
Officers pulled up the security footage prior to the incident. At approximately 1:41 a.m., a black pick up truck with a red topper and light bar pulled up to the vacuum station and parked.
A male driver reportedly got out of the vehicle and removed the license plates, which appeared to be attached by magnets or velcro. The driver then got back into the vehicle and pulled up to bay two of the self-service car wash.
The female passenger then reportedly exited the vehicle and opened the car wash bay door. The male driver pulled the pick up truck into the car wash bay, exited the vehicle and shut the car wash bay door.
He proceeded to grab a large wooden stick from the back of his truck and pushed the surveillance cameras to the ceiling. The male suspect continued to do the same process in self service bays one and three.
Officers found cut marks on the remaining two lock pins and metal shavings on the ground near the boxes, indicating that a cordless grinder was used to cut the locks.
Officers located the suspect vehicle, occupied by 41-year-old Kyle B. Kuchenmeister and Danielle E. Minea, 39, on Jan. 5, at approximately 2:25 a.m. During a search of the vehicle, officers located several pry bars, a pair of collapsible bolt cutters, two license plates, a long stick in the back of the truck, screw drivers, drills, a bolt cutter, methamphetamine pipes and car wash coins.
Kuchenmeister allegedly admitted to the theft and both Minea and Kuchenmeister matched the description seen by officers on surveillance video.
Both Kuchenmeister and Minea were transported to the Monroe County Jail. Minea was charged in Monroe County Circuit Court with possession of methamphetamine as party to a crime, possession of burglarious tools as party to a crime, entry into a locked coin box as party to a crime, criminal damage to property as party to a crime, theft of movable property as party to a crime, possession of THC as party to a crime and possession of drug paraphernalia as party to a crime.
A $500 cash bond was set and she is scheduled for an initial appearance on Jan. 31 at 1 p.m. before Judge Richard Radcliffe.
Kuchenmeister has yet to be charged.