Federal trial begins Monday for Joseph Jakubowski; fugitive for 10 days, accused of stealing guns

MADISON — The federal trial begins Monday, September 25th for Joseph Jakubowski after a 10-day manhunt in April, after he allegedly stole 18 guns and mailed a manifesto to President Donald Trump.

Jakubowski appeared in federal court Wednesday afternoon, September 20th to prepare for trial.

Joseph Jakubowski 4/14/17

He’s charged with stealing firearms and silencers and being a felon in possession of firearms.

Jakubowski has pleaded not guilty to the charges alleging he stole 18 firearms and two silencers from Armageddon Supplies in Janesville on April 4th.

A manifesto Jakubowski mailed to President Donald Trump had federal and local officials worried back in April that Jakubowski was headed for violence. Jakubowski’s lawyer said that was never his plan.

Jakubowski’s lawyer said during the 10-day manhunt, he walked the majority of the time at night — from Rock County to Vernon County. But he did get one ride from someone who found him along the roadside. He was headed for South Dakota.

“He’s a real reasonable guy actually,” said Michael Murphy, defense attorney. “He did his best to avoid homes, roads and any contact with people. He didn’t want to scare anybody. He didn’t intend to hurt anybody. He was on his way out to go off the grid essentially. That’s what he wanted to do,” Murphy said.

Joseph Jakubowski

As for that manifesto mailed to the president?

“It looks like he’s got an ax to grind with society. But I don’t think he meant to strike out at any specific target,” Murphy said.

“There were certainly crimes committed. We’ll proceed on the crimes as they’re charged,” said Rich Sullivan, prosecutor.

Jakubowski was captured on April 14th in Vernon County. Officials said on April 13th, the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office received a report of a suspicious person on a farmer’s property on Estes Road near Readstown, WI. Investigators assigned to the Jakubowski case were sent to that location along with tactical support to assist local authorities in determining whether the suspicious individual was related to the manhunt.

Jakubowski capture in Vernon County

The suspicious person complaint reported that a male matching the description of Jakubowski was camping at that location and refused to leave when he had been asked to do so. Local authorities established a perimeter and tactical support was sent in to investigate.

Shortly before 6:00 a.m., tactical officers made contact with the suspicious person at the campsite, and Jakubowski was taken into custody without incident. Jakubowski was found with four handguns, one long gun, multiple boxes of ammunition, a sword and containers of flammable liquid, as well as a protective vest and helmet.

Joseph Jakubowski