Washington County stolen valor case, man sentenced to prison

Jakobie Timblin

A Wisconsin man has been sentenced to three years in prison in a Washington County stolen valor case

The sheriff's office said 35-year-old Jakobie Timblin of Richland Center pretended to be a Marine – telling his girlfriend he was deployed five times. The sheriff said Timblin purchased a fake uniform and medals online, and while he was "deployed," he was actually in prison.

Timblin pleaded guilty to false statement military service (commit crime), and a charge of theft (false representation) was dismissed. He was also sentenced to three years of extended supervision. 

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According to the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Timblin started communicating with the victim online in 2015. The next year, someone purporting to be Timblin's mother reached out to see whether the victim would write to Timblin overseas, where he was serving in the Marines.

The sheriff said the victim communicated with Timblin through letters for the next several years, and in 2019, they met in person and started dating.

That same year, the victim was contacted by someone claiming to be Timblin’s captain, according to the sheriff, who said he was putting together a gift for Timblin based on the "heroic work he did overseas" and asked for a loan that would be reimbursed by the Department of Defense. The victim wrote a check for $5,000. 

According to the sheriff, during the time they were dating, Timblin told stories about his service, claiming he was deployed five times (four deployments to Iraq and one to Afghanistan). Prosecutors said he brought his "dress blues" to the victim's family cabin with multiple medals attached, including a Purple Heart.

Timblin allegedly told the victim's stepmom that he learned of his mother’s death upon returning from deployment, and he needed money to help with estate planning. He said that he was upset that the bill collector would harass a military man of honor like himself. Ultimately, the victim’s stepmom wrote him a check for $6,500 with the understanding he would pay it back, which never occurred, the sheriff said.

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The stepmom then checked into the obituary of Timblin’s mother and learned that she had only one son named Jacob Elliott. More research led her to discover that Elliot was on extended release for a 2014 armed robbery and verified through a Department of Corrections photo that Elliot is who they knew as Timblin, the sheriff said.

That's when the sheriff's office was contacted.

According to the sheriff's office, a sergeant who is a Marine veteran noticed discrepancies in the uniform Timblin was pictured wearing as to where the patches and medals were placed. Investigators worked with the Marines to verify that Timblin had never served in the armed forces.

Prosecutors allege that Elliot changed his name to Timblin well after he met the victim, purchasing the medals and uniform online. When he claimed to be overseas, he was actually in prison, the sheriff said.