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Kenosha County Eye

In-Custody Man Who Killed Himself In Back of Pleasant Prairie Police Car Identified

Jacob “Jake” Albright (36)

A woman who says she is a relative of 36-year-old Jacob (Jake) Albright of Somers, says that Albright is the man who passed away yesterday after a seemingly self-inflicted gunshot wound. On July 20th 2023, at about 3:46 PM, Officers of the Pleasant Prairie Police Department arrested an adult male for weapons related offenses.  The arrestee was being transported to the Kenosha County Jail for criminal charges by two Pleasant Prairie Police Officers.  While driving the squad on Sheridan Road near the entrance of the Kenosha County Jail, officers heard a gun shot from the backseat prisoner portion of the squad. 

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Preliminary information indicates the arrestee suffered a self-inflicted gun shot wound from a concealed weapon not located in the initial search by officers.  Life saving measures were attempted, however the arrestee was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The woman posted earlier today on Facebook the following:
“My family and I, very much appreciate all the condolences. Please, please, if anything…remember Jacob for his who he was, a giant goofball, a full grown man with the heart of a child. The times he made you laugh til it hurt, his skate board tricks, his elaborate wood work, even his crazy and off the wall antics…he wasn’t just “a criminal in transport”…he was a son, a brother, an uncle, a friend…and so much more. Please please, don’t allow Jacob to become another sad heart that the world, forgets. Thank you.”

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Albright and Family Members

Jacob was a troubled man with a history of drug abuse and violence. His criminal record began in the early 2000’s continuing to the day of his death. He has an arrest and conviction record of:

Felony Burglary of Dwelling
Felony Bail Jumping
Criminal Damage to Property
Receiving Stolen Property
Felony Possession of Cocaine
Retail Theft
Domestic Abuse
Unlawful Use of Phone for Threats of Harm
Felon In Possession of a Firearm
Felony Aiding/Harboring a Felon

Mr. Albright was out on bond for a Felony case of Physical Abuse of an elderly Person – Bodily Harm. He posted a $5,000 cash bond on June 28, 2023. He was facing more felony bail-jumping charges as well as weapons charges per Pleasant Prairie Police.

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Later in the woman’s social media post, she says:

“If anyone has any photos no matter what type…please send me a message. We were not even notified of his death until they had already transported him to Milwaukee and onto a slab. We have not seen his body, we are not being allowed to view his body…and with multiple conflicting reports, I need…evidence. If we are going to be able to hold those accountable for their gross negligence…I need backing from our community.”

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The “Milwaukee Alliance Against Racist & Political Repression” is hosting a vigil for Mr. Albright at 7pm on Saturday night in front of the court house.


  • Kevin Mathewson

    Kevin Mathewson is a disciple of Christ, husband and a father to two wonderful children. Mathewson was born and raised in Lake County, IL and worked as a police & fire dispatcher from 2005 to 2010 in Round Lake Beach, IL. Mathewson moved to Kenosha County in 2006, later being elected to the position of Alderman of the 8th District in 2012 and 2016. Mathewson is a private investigator, security contractor, journalist, and photographer. He enjoys spending time with his family, watching movies, camping and boating. His favorite amendment is the second, followed closely by the first. He loves his country and community.


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59 Responses

  1. Seems to me, Jake saved us all from himself. Feel bad for his family but dont blame anyone except Jake.
    Family didnt help Jake while he was around but now want to find blame and cash in on his death…..

  2. Not uncommon for people like this to end their pain this way. It’s as if their “good side” has to kill off the “bad side.” Sad.

  3. I don’t know this family at all but can understand the pain of those who lost a son, brother, friend etc.. Who knows if mental illness played a part in his life and death.

    In your comments, please remember that those around him a suffering THEIR loss.

  4. The officer(s) are extremely lucky that he didn’t choose to kill them instead.
    People kill themselves daily- to they all get vigils from the Milwaukee Racist group (name is too long to bother typing it all out)?

  5. Let’s see…guy handcuffed in the back of a squad somehow accesses a gun and shoot’s himself. Everything I’m reading seems to point to an intentional self-inflicted wound, and thanks that he didn’t shoot the officers in the car. Suppose he was trying to shoot those officers and in the process of attempting to get the gun in position he pulled the trigger and shot himself? Or maybe, he realized he was lucky the officers’ search missed the gun and he was trying to secrete it in the seat of the car (to prevent it being discovered upon admission to the jail) when he pulled the trigger? Or maybe it was already in the car, left by a previous prisoner, and he found it? Lots of possibilities here…

  6. And the family’s fantasy whitewash of his criminal activity doesn’t change anything, including the minutes leading up to his death. Please don’t tell an unbiased public how to feel or believe. One glance at the facial tats shows he didn’t like himself much.

  7. I feel for the family. Loss of a family member is never a great part of the family life story. With that being said, it seems this member of society was a criminal. The family attempting to make him out for anything different displays a warning to the Police Officers legal storm clouds are on the horizon. AHHHH the smell of free money and a big paycheck at the hands of the taxpayers ! How many times have we all seen it happen, the lost family membered no one would help until of course a course of events happens and the lotto wheels start to turn. Im sure the socalist will make every attempt to paint this in a racist or Police beat down of sorts. Facts are Facts and they will be presented via a investigation. It is how the facts will be twisted to fit the socalist narrative.

  8. You are all terrible people including and especially Kevin! It doesn’t matter his background. He is gone from this world and you are saying GOOD. Amazing representation of Christian Values! His judgment is in front of him, what will YOURS be like when God asks about this event? This is why our numbers are dwindling in our churches.

    1. I flushed a turd today. I didn’t reflect on the amazing steak it once was nor the beautiful plants used in my salad. In the end it was just crap.

  9. I knew Jake. This is tearing jerry up. Especially him getting into it with jerry. I’m sad for the both of them

  10. All video should just be posted today. There are no other “potential” witnesses such as in a shooting in the streets or open view. Post the video, close it out.

  11. Sorry for the family, but he’s just another career criminal that the taxpayers won’t have to support for the next 40 yrs. so we are thankful for that. It doesn’t matter how good he was to some people, some times. He preyed on innocent, law abiding cuitizens and he won’t be doing that anymore.

  12. I think there may be a communication problem with police and this family as why did it take till 1 am for medical examiner/ police to make notification to this family that their loved one died? It’s not like they had to identify the person using fingerprints or dental records as the cops already knew who they were transporting to jail.
    I wonder if the family was provided with the number to the medical examiner in Milwaukee where all Kenosha autopsy’s are performed. A simple act of information is not a luxury it should be required. If this was your family member I’m sure you would want to know when his body would be released so you could do a funeral, when will you get his belongings back, when will the investigation be completed , when will you will be able to get a copy of the final report and how about a name and number for the Racine Sheriff that is handling the investigation?
    Furthermore, maybe an explanation why the Fire Department used a hose to wash bodily fluids, parts ect down the sewer when by all accounts this is medical waste/hazardous waste and needs to be treated as such. Did the fire department do a through job or is there pieces of their loved one still remaining in the driveway?
    I think a little compassion and information can go along way. He may have had a criminal past, that didn’t mean he deserved to die with everyone watching it on the 5 o’clock news. And even though he did die it should never have been in the back of a squad car as the officer did in fact miss the weapon. In the squad this man should have been safe and the family deserves answers to their questions as it was due to police error that their loved one died. With Pleasant Prairie Police saying they are not answering questions and the same with Racine Sheriffs Department, what is this family left with? Too many questions.
    My condolences to the family.

  13. Were all entitled to our own opinions but i don’t think it’s necessary to blast such nastiness all over the internet especially considering he’s another life lost. If it were your family or friend and you were suffering from their untimely death I doubt any of you would appreciate people slamming them the way some of you have done to Jake. Every one is has battles they are fighting that no one knows about, he did too. Be kind and respect those who are grieving.

    1. Exactly. Regardless of what he has done, he is someone’s son, friend, relative, what have you, and regardless of anything he’s done, someone will and does miss him.

  14. Pleasant Prairie Police Chief David Smetana responded to WISN 12 News’s continued questions with a statement on Friday:

    “We are not going to release any further information on this case at this time.

    I am confident that the family of the individual who took his life will get the answers to their questions and concerns after the investigation being conducted by the Racine County Sheriff’s Office is completed.”

    How about transparency Dave??? You are not deserving of being a Chief.

  15. I guess I’m confused why this coalition decided to have a vigil for him? He isn’t black…..was he a member or ?

    Just seems random.

  16. I sure hope the inept Pleasant Prairie Officer that performed that search gets fired. Their obviously pathetic search effort caused this. If they would have took their time and done it correctly and within policy no one would have lost their life. I hope the family sues the crap out of the village.

    1. Sues them for what? He committed suicide. Doesn’t matter if the cops handed him a damn gun before he got in…..he willingly killed himself. Don’t make this more than it is.

      Yes, obviously the cops should be disciplined if they didn’t search him well enough. However, that’s a separate issue from him killing himself.

      1. Once he was arrested and in custody, he was the cops responsibility bottom line… if he was free and able to make his own decisions then it would be on him.

  17. Great job PPPD officers! Your absolute lack of professionalism could cost much more than the arrestee’s life.
    The family should file a legal action against PPPD. You don’t lock a suspect in the back of the squad with a loaded firearm. It is an open invitation to use it. Those two so called officers should be thankful for the rest of their life that this guy didn’t have any evils in him and spared them. I wouldn’t even trust these two the security of PPMC’s Show.
    Matt Kevignston: what happened with these two? Hopefully swiping sidewalks and not “serving and protecting”. They are responsible for this fatality. They should get the message

  18. Everyone is on here commenting on his criminal record, but it’s his criminal record that should have prompted a more thorough search. This incident 100% falls on the police dept. Why isn’t Smetana releasing the names of the officers involved? It seems he has a history of covering for a select few. Why is all the corruption in Pleasant Prairie always investigated in Racine? I find it ironic that Smetana retired from a Racine based law enforcement agency before coming to Pleasant prairie and double dipping. Not only should the two officers involved lose their jobs but Smetana should as well for running such a corrupt police department.

  19. First of all, we don’t have all the facts. According to CCAPS he only has two FELONY convictions (drug related only) in Wisconsin and is out on bond for a FELONY. Either way he is a convicted FELON and not to be in possession of a weapon.
    His autopsy will give better details, if he had alcohol or drugs in his system he was in violation of his bond. Drugs in his system give a statement to his thought process.
    The Tats on his face mean nothing…other than he wanted an identity and ink on his face was it.
    The officers involved did mess up. Did they do a poor search of their squad or a poor search of the suspect….either way, they are lucky they are not dead. I forsee some days off coming….
    The family of the perp…obviously they want answers and are justified to get some.
    But they should not get any more money than for a funeral for the perp. He chose his course of action and the family was not there.
    To those who believe in letting perps out of jail helps…well, in this case if he was locked up this would not have occurred. And obviously his actions in the outside world showed he was a harm to others.
    Over the next few months the truth will come out. But to those seeking monetary funds for a perps death, especially in a suicide, I don’t think you have any standing…

  20. In today’s news, there was an officer involved shooting in the City of Kenosha and it’s currently being investigated by the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department. It’s protocol for an outside agency to investigate these types of cases. Why does Racine County Sheriff’s Department always seem to investigate incidents involving Pleasant Prairie? Doesn’t anyone else find this suspicious, considering that Smetana is from Racine, retired from Racine PD, and has close ties to Racine agencies? Also, why haven’t the names of the officers been released? It seems that Smetana is covering something or for someone. My prediction is that he’s buying time to try and minimize the liability on the department and the negligence of the officers. Enough of his corruption! Pleasant Prairie is a joke!

  21. Smetana should be fired. When he worked at Racine they hid him in internal affairs. Good background check. Smetana is a joke.

  22. Smetana is nothing but a puppet and a sell out! He’s a “yes man” for the corrupt administration of the village. All of the officers who were close to retirement and eligible to remain the village’s health insurance after retirement, were run out the door; either pushed into early retirement or their lives made so miserable that they went somewhere else. Those officers were replaced by new officers (some of them from Racine and fast tracked into promotions) and under a new contract that did not offer health insurance after retirement. Doesn’t anyone wonder why the entire top half of the department left or retired early and in a very short time period? They actually had 4 people retire in the same day and all before retirement age! It was all about saving the village money. Maybe if Smetana wasn’t such a corrupt sellout, he would still have experienced officers working for him and not a bunch of rookies! I hope the village pays dearly for this!

    1. Officers that had eight years plus on the job also couldn’t stand this administration they voluntarily left this department to start different careers not in law enforcement. Kevin, I would ask how many officers have left the Prairie since Smetana was hired. Then I would see how old each of the officers were when they left. You are in for an interesting surprise.

      1. By these officers retiring early or before retirement age, they actually got less benefits with respect to money. There is a reason that officers would leave early like that. Think about this.

      2. Don’t forget the deputy chief committing suicide not long after retiring. Nobody talked about that either.

  23. Officers that had eight years plus on the job also couldn’t stand this administration they voluntarily left this department to start different careers not in law enforcement. Kevin, I would ask how many officers have left the Prairie since Smetana was hired. Then I would see how old each of the officers were when they left. You are in for an interesting surprise.

  24. So.. You’re telling me that this man, a career criminal, had just been arrested on weapons offenses and was en route to jail yet still managed to procure yet another weapon out of thin air and shoot himself? And what, were his hands not cuffed behind his back as well?
    And oh, now the family isn’t allowed to see the body?

    This totally checks out. A plausible scenario indeed.

    1. All of you keep talking about what a BAD person this guy was. THAT’S exactly why he should have been searched more thoroughly!! The fact or opinion that he was a bad guy does not relieve the police from ANY liability. If anything, it creates more question as to their actions or lack there of…

      The police negligent!!! Smetana is going to drag this out until it’s old news and nobody cares anymore. He’s keeping the names of the officers out of the news to avoid anything in their past becoming public and creating further damage for the village and himself. The family needs to get an attorney and start pressing for answers.

      1. I agree! There have been police involved shootings and we have facts and information within a week. With body and squad cam this should be cut and dry. Why is it taking so long for information to be released? The longer this goes on with no information or facts released I feel like something is being covered up. I also think this family should hire an attorney. If this was my family member I would not give up.

  25. It’s been a month! Why hasn’t Smetana released the names of the officers involved? It’s basic biographical information and has nothing to do with the outcome of the investigation. Unless he’s covering for someone. Then the names would have a negative impact and possibly give the family’s attorney ammunition for a stronger case. What happened to transparency Dave? You lying POS!

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