Escondido Bomb House Renter Under Federal Indictment
Search Warrant Released Says George Jakubec Confessed To Robbing 3 Banks
Last Updated: 895 days ago
The man charged in connection with a so-called bomb factory in Escondido is now under federal indictment.An eight-count federal indictment was filed late Thursday against George Jakubec. The indictment includes allegations ranging from building bombs to robbing banks. According to federal prosecutors, Jakubec robbed three banks last year and attempted a fourth hold up. Prosecutors have not said when Jakubec will be arraigned in federal court.Jakubec is scheduled to appear in court in Vista at 8:30 a.m. for a status hearing. Its unclear how the federal case will impact that court appearance.10News has also learned Jakubec will be transferred from the jail in Vista to the federal jail in downtown San Diego sometime Friday.Preparations will continue around 7:00 Friday morning to clear trees and brush surrounding Jakubecs former rental home on Via Scott in northern Escondido.Thursday, crews began construction of a 16-foot high protective wall. The metal frame stretches from the front porch to the patio on the north side of Jakubecs former home. Sheriffs officials said it will be encased in drywall and then coated with a fire-resistant gel to prevent the heat or fire from spreading to the nearest homes. Sheriff Bill Gore said it would be a tightly controlled burn similar to a chimney.The burn operation could happen as early as Wednesday depending on weather conditions.On Wednesday, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency in San Diego County following the discovery of what police called a virtual bomb factory in the Escondido-area home.Under the declaration, the California Emergency Management Agency will coordinate efforts of all state agencies and provide assistance to San Diego County to remove the hazardous materials.The declaration came a day after authorities said they plan to burn down the home next week because it is the only way to eliminate the danger from nine to 12 pounds of highly explosive materials found inside. Mass evacuations, the closing of a major freeway and containment of flames are just a few of the logistics being worked out before the burning of the North County house.Officials have been holding meetings behind closed doors as they try to organize the huge operation planned for next week.The burn was planned after bomb technicians and Hazmat crews discovered homemade explosives and hazardous chemicals strewn throughout the house rented by 54-year-old George Jakubec, who according to a search warrant released Wednesday confessed to robbing three banks and trying to rob one of them twice.Jakubec has pleaded not guilty to 26 counts of manufacturing or possessing explosives and two counts of bank robbery.According to the search warrant, items seized from the house included sulfuric acid, nitric acid and hydrochloric acid. Authorities also confiscated a grenade mold, a bag with pieces of metal, a jar with ball bearings and three wireless doorbells with remotes. Two handguns, a .22-caliber Ruger and a Glock 19, also were taken, along with a blue Escondido police shirt.Investigators also confiscated three computers, a book on high explosives, two molds of human faces and four wigs.Authorities said it was unclear what Jakubec may have planned to do with the materials. His estranged wife has told the San Diego Union-Tribune that he became increasingly unstable since losing his job several years ago. Pictures taken inside the house showed clutter on every surface. Mixed in with the clutter were 13 unfinished shrapnel grenades, a jar of explosives, blasting caps, and chemicals. A huge wall will be built around the entire house before firefighters light the house on fire."We're going to basically cause this house to become very, very hot very, very quickly and with the walls and things still up, it will literally contain it almost like a chimney and keep everything in close," said Nick Vent of San Diego County Hazmat.The operation will be similar to one that happened two years ago in Texas City, Texas, where authorities used a controlled detonation to destroy an apartment filled with explosive materials too dangerous to be moved. Dump trucks were brought in to create a blast barrier to protect other apartments. The Texas operation was successful, since other apartments were not damaged.Experts believe the same technique will work in Escondido, and although some residents have expressed concerns about a fire being set so close to their homes, most seem to accept it."I think it's the best thing to do," said resident Cynthia Borneman. "I wonder why they didn't blow it up in the first place."Since the county has declared the house a public nuisance, they do not have to reimburse the homeowner for any loss caused by the fire. Homeowners insurance policies should help cover the damage.The house is scheduled to be burned down between Dec. 8 and Dec. 10.