(Reuters) - A Wisconsin man who sent an anti-government manifesto to U.S. President Donald Trump was found guilty by a federal jury on Tuesday of stealing an arsenal of weapons from a gun shop.
Joseph Jakubowski, 32, was arrested in April after a massive manhunt following his theft of 18 guns and two silencers from the shop. Before the crime, he mailed a 161-page manifesto to Trump, criticizing government officials and voicing “anti-religious views,” according to investigators.
Jakubowski faces up to 10 years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines for each count of stealing from a licensed firearm dealer and being a felon in possession of a firearm, said Kyle Frederickson, a deputy clerk at the district court, in a phone call.
Jakubowski is set to be sentenced on Dec. 20 at U.S. District Court in Madison, Wisconsin.
“We respect the jury’s verdict and anticipate the judge will hear the story that the jury didn’t get - namely, why he did what he did,” Jakubowski’s lawyer Joseph Bugni said in an email, adding he expected more of the story to be revealed during sentencing.
The hunt for Jakubowski began after an April 4 break-in at Armageddon Supplies, a gun shop in the suspect’s hometown of Janesville, about 70 miles (113 km) southwest of Milwaukee, in Rock County. He was found by law enforcement 10 days later in rural Southwest Wisconsin, where he appeared to be camping.
“Jakubowski admitted during interviews with law enforcement agents following his arrest and in his testimony at trial that he was the person who broke into Armageddon Supplies and stole the firearms and silencers,” Jeffrey Anderson, acting U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, which prosecuted the case, said in a statement.
Before the theft, a video posted to social media appeared to show Jakubowski mailing the manifesto.
Jakubowski previously served time in prison for trying to wrestle a gun away from a police officer.
His sister also found a letter Jakubowski had written before the break-in at the gun shop, explaining he wanted to purchase weapons to protect himself and his family, but was barred from doing so because he is a convicted felon, according to court documents.
Reporting by Suzannah Gonzales; Editing by Richard Chang and James Dalgleish