Joseph Jakubowski Manhunt Ends as Trump Manifesto Sender Caught

Lauren Perry
April 15, 2017

The nationwide manhunt for the Janesville man who allegedly stole guns and mailed an anti-government manifesto to President Donald Trump ended in remote farmland in Vernon County Friday morning where he gave himself up without incident after law enforcement authorities found him under a tarp, looking disheveled and exhausted.

Jakubowski was camped out on Jeff Gorn's Vernon County property Thursday night when Gorn found him and spoke to him for an hour.

Spoden said he believed Jakubowski had a plan that started with writing the document and breaking into the gun shop to steal weapons.

Janesville Police Chief David Moore and Rock County Sheriff Robert Spoden said authorities had received more than 700 tips in the nationwide search for Jakubowski. Rock County Sheriff's Office Commander Troy Knudson said the writings appeared genuine. The arrest left residents and law enforcement relieved from fears over what Jabukowski might do with his stockpile of weapons and ammunition. In that incident, another suspect was arrested Wednesday night for allegedly picking up a gun at Lincoln Elementary School in Janesville on April 6.

When the law enforcers finally caught up with Jakubowski early Friday, they saw him hiding under a tarp and looking disheveled and out of sorts. Federal officers positively identified him around 6 a.m. and he surrendered without incident, "which is what we hoped for", Spoden said.

Wisconsin court records show Jakubowski previously was convicted of disarming a police officer, a class H felony offense.

But it wasn't until Thursday evening that a retired school counselor provided the break in the case, alerting investigators to a man he'd found camping on his property about 125 miles (200 kilometers) northwest of Janesville, Wisconsin.

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Gorn says he took his 4-wheeler over to the tarp, where he realized someone was inside.

Thank you to law enforcement at the municipal, county, state and federal level for their outstanding work!

Gorn says he wasn't scared of Jakubowski, but that he could tell something was wrong.

UPDATE: Just after 8:00 am this morning, the Sheriff's Department in Richland County confirmed wanted fugitive Joseph Jakubowski was arrested shortly after 5:00 am Friday morning.

An anti-religious fugitive who allegedly robbed a Wisconsin gun store and threatened to attack churches on Easter Sunday has been taken into custody. A few hours later, Jakubowski broke into a Janesville weapons store, stole 18 guns, then set his auto on fire, authorities have said. He says the man he later learned was Jakubowski was angry with society in general, but never raised his voice.

Authorities said his rambling manifesto didn't include specific targets, but the threats to carry out violent acts were concern enough to bring the FBI, the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and other federal and state law enforcement agencies into the manhunt.

Other reports by VgToday

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