Man accused of shooting brother-in-law while wearing Trump mask, Santa Claus hat and curly white beard

Victim did not recognise family member due to elaborate disguise, police say

James Crump
Sunday 27 December 2020 15:03 GMT
Kimmel removes all the misinformation from Trumps speech
Leer en Español

A man in California has been accused of attempting to murder his brother-in-law, while wearing a rubberised mask resembling Donald Trump, a Santa Claus hat and a long curly white beard. 

In a statement on Saturday, the Rohnert Park Department of Public Safety in California said that officers had arrested Gerald Jacinth, 75, on suspicion of attempted murder, after he shot his brother-in-law, 77, twice outside his home earlier that day.

The authorities confirmed that the victim, who has not been named, is recovering in hospital from the “serious non-life-threatening injuries” sustained in the attack.

The department said that the incident, which took place in Rohnert Park, California, occurred when Mr Jacinth approached his brother-in-law with a duffel bag and a separate package at around 11.30am on Saturday.

“He had parked his black Dodge car across the street from the victim’s house wearing an over the head mask resembling Donald Trump, white long curly beard and a Santa hat as he made his way up the driveway,” the Rohnert Park authorities said in the statement.

The department said that the victim met the approaching Mr Jacinth outside of his home, but did not recognise him because of the disguise.

After the victim would not accept the package that his brother-in-law had described as a “special delivery”, Mr Jacinth raised the duffel bag and shot him twice with the gun hidden inside, according to NBC News.

The authorities said that although “the victim was suffering from two gunshot wounds,” he was “still able to take a photo of Jacinth getting into his vehicle as he was fleeing.”

The victim then called the police, and responding officers arrived at his residence just one minute later. They quickly cornered Mr Jacinth in his car and arrested him after he surrendered.

“While searching the vehicle, the officers found a .380 handgun in a duffel bag,” the department said on Saturday. The authorities also found the mask, beard and hat in Mr Jacinth’s car.

A Sonoma County ordnance disposal team inspected the package, which Mr Jacinth had left on the victim’s drive, but discovered that only a towel was inside.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Mr Jacinth is being held in Sonoma County Jail on a $1m (£747,348) bail.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in