Joey A. Maillet

Joey A. Maillet

Federal grand jury indicts suspect in FREDS Guns burglary

Joey A. Maillet to appear in U.S. District Court in Seattle on Thursday

SEATTLE — A federal grand jury has indicted a man accused of stealing 26 handguns from FREDS Guns in Sequim, 13 rifles from a gun store in Bow and a boat motor and battery in Ferndale.

In an indictment filed Thursday, Joey A. Maillet, a U.S. and Canadian citizen, was charged with two counts of theft of a firearm from a Federal Firearms Licensee, specifically for two guns — one from each store — that had been shipped and transported in interstate and foreign commerce.

Maillet is scheduled for arraignment in U.S. District Court in Seattle on Thursday. Maillet was ordered held in Federal Detention Center, SeaTac, until trial. He was charged by complaint in July.

According to the Department of Justice, only one of the 39 guns has been recovered.

Until last month, Maillet had been held in the Clallam County jail on state charges, but those charges were dismissed last month to allow Maillet to be taken into federal custody.

Court records cite Maillet’s extensive criminal history, including arrests in Washington, Massachusetts, Montana, California, Florida, Missouri, Louisiana and New Hampshire, as reasons to hold him without bond.

Federal court records show that Maillet was cited twice in 2017 for crossing the United States’ northern border illegally, once in Washington and once in Maine.

Court records said that video and forensic evidence link Maillet to the April 13 burglary of FREDS Guns in Carlsborg and the May 3 burglary of All American Armory in Bow, Skagit County.

In both burglaries Maillet is accused of using a vehicle stolen from nearby — both of which had keys left in the vehicle — to smash into the stores, according to court records and interviews.

Court records say that surveillance video shows a man driving an agricultural front loader stolen from Leitz Farms into the building April 13. Video shows the man running into the building, falling into and shattering the gun display case and loading a duffel bag with 26 firearms.

Investigators lifted about 10 latent prints from the scene.

The case is being investigated by the ATF, with assistance from the Clallam County Sheriff’s Office, Sequim Police Department, State Patrol, Skagit County Sheriff’s Office, Ferndale Police Department and Washington State Parks rangers.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Erin H. Becker with assistance from Clallam County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Jesse Espinoza.

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Reporter Jesse Major can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56250, or at [email protected].

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