IANAL, but looking at “Whoever attempts to commit a crime by doing any act toward its commission, but fails in its perpetration, or is intercepted or prevented in its perpetration,” my thought is: he didn’t try and fail, he wasn’t intercepted or prevented in the attempt, because, except for possessing the note and wearing the wig and stocking in the vicinity of a business establishment, he didn’t do anything.
The Caze case doesn’t strike me as very similar since that defendant was idiotic enough to tell practically everyone he knew that he was going to rob the McDonald’s. I grant that saying you’re going to commit a crime, and then being caught in the act of doing it, or being about to do it, are reasonable grounds for arrest.
Now, for all we know, Mr. Jakaitis will be found to have told a bunch of people his plans, too. He seems dumb enough to have done so. But for the sake of our discussion, let’s assume there is no evidence of such a statement.
Absent that, it seems to me that he had an idea, and may have made preliminary steps to executing it, but didn’t carry it out, and none of the preliminary steps can reasonably considered crimes in and of themselves.
If I sit here in my house and write a holdup note, pull a stocking over my head, put on a wig, and fall asleep, and then my neighbor and friend the cop walks in to borrow a cup of sugar, am I going to be charged with attempted robbery? Can’t I just say I was joking? Isn’t writing a note a freedom of speech issue?
BTW, did you notice that the gun was a cap pistol, not a real gun? Does that make a difference with respect to that “dangerous weapon” bit?