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Two Men Plead Not Guilty to Stealing Over $2 Million in Baseball Cards from Strongsville Hotel

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Two men accused of stealing over $2 million worth of baseball cards from a Best Western in Strongsville pleaded not guilty in Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas on Thursday.

Jacob Paxton, 27, a hotel employee, entered a not guilty plea to charges of aggravated theft of $1,500,000 or more and tampering with evidence. His bond was set at $50,000, and his next court appearance is scheduled for July 15.

Jason Bowling, 50, the second defendant, pleaded not guilty to a charge of receiving stolen property. His bond was set at $100,000, and he will also return to court on July 15.

Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O’Malley reported that a FedEx delivery employee dropped off a package containing 54 vintage baseball cards valued at $2,123,447 at the hotel on April 17. The package was intended for Memory Lane Inc., a company participating in a sports card conference next door.

When a representative from Memory Lane Inc. arrived at the hotel on April 18 to retrieve the package, it was missing, prompting a police investigation.

Strongsville police discovered that Paxton had sifted through several packages delivered to the hotel and had taken the baseball cards to Bowling’s residence in Cleveland. On May 23, police executed a search warrant at Bowling’s home and recovered 52 of the 54 stolen cards.

Two cards remain missing: a 1909 Ramly Walter Johnson card and a 1941 Ted Williams card.

Anyone with information regarding the missing cards is encouraged to contact the Strongsville Police at 440.580.3247, referencing report #2024-000693.

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