By Lindsay Toler
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That affidavit was part of an army investigation launched in January 2005, after which Jakob had gone AWOL and attempted to enlist in the U.S. Naval Reserve in Tennessee with a fake discharge form, the DOD learned.
In June 2006 Jakob's military service ended with a dishonorable discharge. At the hearing, he offered no evidence in his defense.
In contrast to the tales he'd told his fellow servicemen and, later, the Franklin County jury, Jakob had spent the years leading up to his fatal encounter with little Daymeon working a string of odd jobs. He drove a truck and worked at a few factories. He also worked for a spell as a contractor.
"When I first met him, at a Lowe's, he said he was in charge of building all the decks at the Legends [subdivision] in Eureka," recalls Washington resident Phil Marquart, who was employed by Jakob for a time. "Come to find out he was hired to do one deck. And that deck never got built. He took the couple's money — $11,000 — stole their tools and declared bankruptcy on that money, calling it a loan."
Marquart says he caught Jakob in a string of lies ranging from the quality of his golf game to the purported crew of carpenters he employed. "Finally one day I just told him, 'Go fuck yourself. You're a liar.' And I stormed off the job."
Informed that records indicate Jakob had told the FBI that Marquart owned the deck-building business and folded it in the midst of a divorce, Marquart, who remains very much married, bursts out laughing. "I was what? No shit? Wow!"
In January 2007 Bill Jakob answered a classified ad for a lock installer placed by Maryland Heights-based Total Lock & Security Company. Owner Gidget Fogerty liked the idea of hiring a veteran. After offering him the job, she remembers, "He called back to say, 'Do you have anything else? I just got back from Iraq, and my wife really doesn't want me to travel anymore.' He said he'd dispatched gas tanks with the army," adds Fogerty, "so we made him a dispatcher."
Jakob regaled his Total Lock coworkers with tales of battle and produced dog tags and photos that appeared to back up his accounts. He also showed initiative, and Fogerty promoted him to sales and provided him a company car, plus gas expenses for travel.
It wasn't long before the move paid off. Jakob scored Total Lock a deal to outfit Fort Leonard Wood with a suite of high-security locks, and then, in the fall of 2007, he informed Fogerty he'd landed a $386,000 contract with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Jakob submitted a purchase order and a chain of e-mail correspondence related to the contract. The Army Corps e-mails came from Hotmail.com addresses under the names "Lisa Kennedy" and "Terri Morstetter," but Jakob explained away the nongovernmental domain names, saying, "This is the way the federal government does things after 9/11."
"Our employees would ask him for different bits of information, very technical information, about the locks and other things, and he would always come back with the correct information," says Fogerty, who purchased $100,000 worth of materials to start the Army Corps job.
Then Total Lock tried to run the credit card number Jakob supplied, and it got declined — twice.
"I questioned him about it," says Fogerty, "and he got all flustered. He said, 'I'll go talk to them and figure out the problem.' The next day his company car was in the parking lot with the keys in the ignition. A couple days later he mailed back his swipe card to the building."
Fogerty was flummoxed. She didn't know if she had a contract to deliver on or not. She tried and failed to reach "Kennedy" and "Morstetter" at the Corps of Engineers.
That's when the Total Lock staff began to reflect on some of the curious things Bill Jakob had bragged about.
He'd told colleagues he owned hundreds of acres, and numerous horses, in Franklin County, but whenever he invited a coworker to come hunting or fishing, the coworker would arrive but Jakob would fail to show up.
He said he owned a Cessna. He said he owned a strip joint on the east side. He said he won the Medal of Honor, but when asked to produce it, he never did. One night toward the end of his tenure, Total Lock employees were celebrating a birthday at a nearby Hooters when Jakob abruptly stood to leave, saying he had Drug Enforcement Administration business to attend to.
And then there was the funny business with the young woman who sometimes spent an entire day reading a book in Jakob's truck outside Total Lock while he worked. When Fogerty got wind of the woman's presence, she asked Jakob about it. "He said, 'Oh, that's just my sister, she's here to pick up my truck for me.'"
Investigators would later learn that Jakob was having an extramarital affair with the woman, Chelsea Potter. It seemed the couple had met at First United Methodist Church in Washington, where Jakob taught adult Bible study, performed in the praise band and regularly assisted the minister with worship. Jakob had told congregation members that he was ordained by an offshoot of the Roman Catholic Church and was planning to start his own religious society. A member of the church had set him up with several sets of engaged friends and Jakob had performed their marriage ceremonies.