Clintonville carjacking suspect taken into custody in Northwestern Wisconsin

Seth Genereau captured on a trail camera near Washburn.
Seth Genereau captured on a trail camera near Washburn.(Bayfield County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Sep. 29, 2022 at 5:24 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 29, 2022 at 1:33 PM CDT
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BAYFIELD COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) - A man wanted in connection to a carjacking in Clintonville has been taken into custody in Northwestern Wisconsin.

The Bayfield County Sheriff’s Office said Thursday afternoon that Seth Genereau, 23, was taken into custody about 1 p.m.

“Seth Genereau is in our custody. He and all officers involved are safe. Thank you everyone for your help,” reads a post on the Sheriff’s Office Facebook page.

Genereau has been on the run for over a week since he allegedly committed a carjacking and stole a car from Clintonville. He traveled to Northwestern Wisconsin where he stole another vehicle and escaped into some woods in the Washburn area of Bayfield County. There

A felony warrant has been issued for Genereau in Waupaca County in connection to the carjacking in Clintonville.

Clintonville Police say Genereau arrived at a gas station on the city’s north side in a stolen 1965 red Ford out of Hortonville, which was had a mechanical issue. Gas station clerk Jeremy Merrigan said Genereau tried to break into his car, which was locked. Then he spotted a minivan, driven by an 81-year-old Michigan man, coming out of the car wash.

Merrigan said, “He came up to the gentleman, told him he was having some car trouble in the back, so the old guy got into the back of his car, and as soon as he did that the younger guy jumped into the driver’s seat to drive away. The old guy went to grab him, fell down in the process, scraped his elbow and the guy was gone.”

The 81-year-old victim is from Michigan but has close ties to the area. He’s recovering from his injuries.

Genereau drove away in a black, 2020 Chrysler Pacifica with Michigan license plate DWF 1599. On Sept. 22, the Iron County Sheriff’s Office located the vehicle and attempted to stop the driver, who took off at high rates of speed on US Highway 2. The driver turned north on State Highway 13 into Bayfield County. The vehicle hit another vehicle and continued on.

Bayfield County deputies tracked the car to a driveway on Friendly Valley Road. The suspect, identified as Seth Genereau, ditched it there and stole another car, officials say.

About 100 yards away, the stolen vehicle got stuck and Genereau ran into the woods.

On Sept. 23, Genereau was captured on a trail camera in the Washburn area. Officials believed he was looking for shelter or to steal another vehicle.

On Sept. 28, the Bayfield County Sheriff’s Office was called to a home in Washburn after someone reported a “male with similar features as Seth Genereau was found inside their home.”

The man left on foot. Genereau was located the next day.

Officials did not release additional details about where they found Genereau and how they took him into custody Thursday.

Genereau is charged in Waupaca County court with two counts of Operating a Motor Vehicle Without Owner’s Consent, including one count with an enhanced penalty because the victim was an elderly person; Robbery with Use of Force, with an Elder Person Enhancer; Physical Abuse of an Elder Person; and Theft of Movable Property.

Police say Genereau is no stranger to law enforcement in Waupaca County as he’s being investigated for other crimes as well.