Mom: Son accused of trying to join terror group mentally ill

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Photo credit: Dane County Sheriff’s Office

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MADISON, Wis. (AP – April 11, 2015) — The mother of a Wisconsin man accused of trying to join the Islamic State group says he’s a mentally ill loner who often makes boastful comments to try to win acceptance.

Federal prosecutors have charged 34-year-old Joshua Van Haften with trying to aid a terrorist group. He was arrested at O’Hare Airport in Chicago on Wednesday. He’s accused of traveling to Turkey in a failed attempt to join the group in Syria.

His mother, 56-year-old Janice Van Haften, of Beloit, tells the Wisconsin State Journal he likes to make wild comments to draw attention to himself or to keep other people away.

And she says he never fully recovered from a serious brain injury he suffered when he was hit by a car when he was 15.

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