The missing teen found alive after being kidnapped from her home slept soundly next to her relatives last night after her miraculous escape.
Speaking to DailyMail.com on the first day that Jayme Closs has woken up in the safety of her family’s care since her extraordinary recovery on Thursday afternoon, her aunt Jennifer Smith said: ‘She had a good night’s sleep. It’s been just wonderful and it’s just wonderful to have her back.
‘God is good! He answered our prayers he certainly did and we’ve just been overwhelmed by everyone’s support. ‘
Last year, in an exclusive interview with DailyMail TV, Jennfier and her sister Sue Allard told of the family’s desperate bid to keep Jayme in the nation’s hearts and minds.
Today she described their success and her niece’s return as, ‘a miracle.’
Now, she said, the family is coming together to heal from the horrors of that October night on which Jayne’s parents, Denise and James Closs were gunned down and she was taken.
Speaking of Denise, Jennifer said, ‘She can rest in peace now.’
For now, she said they plan to just enjoy having Jayme back with them as the reality of her return sinks in, making an emotional promise to the girl’s murdered parents to ‘make her safe forever’.
It comes as brave Jayme was pictured for the first time since her escape in a beautiful reunion with her aunt and dog just hours after she was found.
She is pictured smiling alongside her aunt Jennifer, who is now her guardian, in the new image, which was taken on Friday.
Jayme Closs, 13, is pictured smiling alongside her aunt just hours after her escape
Jayme’s aunt Jennifer Naiberg Smith has made an emotional promise to the teen’s murdered parents to ‘make her safe forever’ after telling supporters the teen slept well
Facebook page Healing for Jayme Closs posted: ‘After hundreds of requests from the public, we’ve gotten permission from Jayme’s aunt/guardian Jennifer, to create an online fundraiser to support Jayme’
Jake Thomas Patterson, of Gordon, Wis., has been jailed on kidnapping and homicide charges in the October killing of a Wisconsin couple and abduction of their teen daughter, Jayme Closs
The teen’s aunts Kelly Engelhardt, pictured right, and Carla Closs, left, said they never gave up hope of finding their niece and had ‘faith everyday’
Jennifer said Saturday her niece had ‘a pretty good night sleep’, adding it was ‘great to know she was next to me all night’.
Guardian Jennifer wrote on Facebook: ‘Jayme had a pretty good night sleep. It was great to know she was next to me all night what a great feeling to have her home.
‘As a family we will get through all of the healing process Jayme has. It will be a long road but we are family strong and we love this little girl so much!! We will do anything and everything!!
‘My beloved sister Denise pooh and brother in law Jim can rest at peace and I keep assuring them Jayme is safe and we will make sure forever. We all miss them both dearly now they know there (stet) Jayme which was there (stet) whole world is home with family!! God is Good !! Bless you all!!’
Jake Thomas Patterson, 21, is accused of kidnapping the teen and killing her mom and dad after ‘targeting’ the 13-year-old girl in their house in Barron, Wisconsin.
Police confirmed Patterson, from Gordon, Wis., is in custody on two charges of first degree intentional homicide in the deaths of Jayme’s parents and one count of kidnapping. They say the family did not know the accused.
And Jayme’s grandfather Robert Naiberg reiterated Saturday that the family had no connection with Patterson and didn’t know him. He says Jayme told FBI agents that she didn’t know Patterson at all.
The new photo was shared by the Facebook page ‘Healing for Jayme Closs’ and reads: ‘Nothing makes me happier right now than seeing this photo. Seeing this reunion, seeing that smile! We love you Jayme!’
It said on Friday evening: ‘Jayme’s aunt sent us this photo two hours ago and has given permission for it to be reposted.’
The Facebook page also shared that a fundraiser had been set up for wellwishers to contribute to.
The official fundraising page closed on Saturday after it ‘greatly surpassed its goal’ and raised more than $50,000.
Those running the page posted: ‘We have ended our Facebook fundraiser as we greatly surpassed our goal. We recommend those still wishing to donate contact Sterling Bank and reference the Closs Family Benefit Fund.
‘There’s been a lot of confusion with dozens of gofundmes popping up, most falsely claiming to be relatives. We’ve been able to confirm with Jennifer and Sue that Angela Nevada de Andriano is a legitimate cousin who has started a fund. So here is another option for those still wishing to donate online.’
The teen’s family have said they never gave up hope that she would be found and had ‘faith everyday’.
Aunt Kelly Engelhardt told wsaw: ‘We knew she was still there, we knew. We had faith everyday. Everyday.
‘Disbelief, excited. I cried instantly. I fell to the bench that was sitting there when they told me. I got up and I hugged the chief deputy. The smile on his face was like, I knew. I knew it was good news, and I just cried.’
Carla Closs, another aunt, added: ‘Just to see her, just to look at her, just to see that she’s okay.’
Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald released additional details Friday evening and said the suspect went to great lengths to alter his physical appearance and hide evidence of the alleged murder, including shaving his head.
Police say they have recovered the shotgun used to shoot open door October 15 as well as other guns.
President of the Jennie-O Turkey Store in Barron, Steve Lykken, also said Patterson once worked at her parents’ employer before quitting after a single day.
He issued a statement Friday saying Patterson was hired one day but quit the next, explaining that he was moving away from the area.
An obituary for James and Denise Closs says they worked at the turkey processing plant for 27 years.
Unemployed Patterson had no previous criminal history and was not on the radar of police. They say they are not looking for anyone else in connection with the case.
Police believe Patterson – said to have hidden the girl in the home he grew up in – killed the Wisconsin couple because he wanted to abduct their daughter. They say she was ‘the only target’.
The teen vanished from her home in Barron, Wisconsin on October 15, the same day the teenager’s parents, James, 56, and Denise Closs, 46, (above) were found shot dead inside
Jake Patterson (right) with mother Deborah (center) in 2015 and sister Katie (left)
TIMELINE OF JAYME CLOSS’ DISAPPEARANCE
Jayme Closs was missing for three months
Oct. 15, 2018 – Jayme’s parents, James and Denise Closs, found dead at their home in Barron and the teen is reported missing
Oct. 16, 2018 – Investigators say they don’t consider Jayme a suspect in her parents’ deaths
Oct. 17, 2018 – Authorities announce that investigators believe Jayme was in her family’s home when he parents were fatally shot
Oct. 18, 2018 – About 100 people join a ground search for Jayme after Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald requests the help of volunteers
Oct. 23, 2018 – About 2,000 volunteers from as far as Minneapolis help with another ground search . Several items are found and taken for assessment
Oct. 24, 2018 – The FBI offers a $25,000 reward for information leading to Jayme’s location. The amount is later doubled to $50,000 by the Jennie-O Turkey Store, where James and Denise Closs worked
Oct. 27, 2018 – Funeral held for James and Denise Closs
Oct. 29, 2018 – Prosecutors announce they have charged a man with burglarizing the Closs home but say he’s not a suspect in the case.
Dec. 12, 2018 – Tree of Hope lit as community prays for her safe return
Jan. 10, 2019 – After three months Jayme is found alive in Gordon, Wisconsin. A suspect is taken into custody.
Jan. 11, 2019 – Police named the man accused of kidnapping her as Jake Thomas Patterson, 21
Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald say Patterson ‘planned his actions and took many steps to hide his identity’. She was kept in a ‘home in a remote area’ of Douglas County, Fitzgerald said.
He said: ‘Jayme was taken against her will and escaped from the residence at which she was being held in. We also don’t believe at this time the suspect had any contact with the family. We do believe that Jayme was the only target.
‘I can tell you that the subject planned his actions and took many proactive steps to hide his identity from law enforcement and the general public.
‘It appears he concealed her from other people … his friends.’
He was pulled over by police in his car just minutes after Jayme was found and gave a description of the vehicle.
Fitzgerald said he doesn’t know if Jayme was abused by her captor and that detectives are now interviewing her about her ordeal.
Patterson lived three doors down from the woman who called 911 to report that a missing 13-year-old Wisconsin girl had been found.
Teacher Kristin Kasinskas says she taught him middle school science but only remembers that he was quiet.
Kasinskas says she didn’t see Patterson during the months that Jayme was missing.
She added: ‘I don’t really remember a ton about him. He seemed like a quiet kid. I don’t recall anything that would have explained this, by any means.’
It comes as another neighbor of Patterson says she and her husband had problems with him siphoning gas years ago.
Daphne Ronning told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that Patterson’s parents moved to Gordon about 15 years ago.
She says the parents later moved away but Patterson and his brother continued to use the home. She says she and her husband once caught them siphoning gas. She says her husband spoke with them and they didn’t have any further problems.
Ronning says she didn’t know Patterson was living in the house and hadn’t seen Jayme around.
Jeanne Nutter, pictured Friday, was walking her dog near the cabin she owns with her husband Forrest when she found Jayme Closs coming out of nearby woods. Kristin and Peter Kasinskas, pictured right, say their neighbor had a skinny, dirty girl with matted hair wearing shoes several sizes too big for her feet standing next to her
It has also since emerged that ownership of the remote cabin where she was apparently held was passed to a credit union soon after her abduction.
Patterson’s father transferred the title of the cabin near Gordon to Superior Choice Credit Union on Oct. 23 – eight days after the attack at the Closs family’s home, according to records.
Jayme was described as ‘skinny and dirty but outwardly OK’ by the couple who called 911 after the teenager flagged down dogwalker Jeanne Nutter in rural Wisconsin.
FBI Special Agent Justin Tolomeo said: ‘In cases like this we often need a big break, and it was Jayme herself who gave us that break.’
Fitzgerald says Closs was medically cleared, is out of the hospital and is being interviewed by law enforcement.
She was taken from her home in Barron, Wisconsin on October 15, the same day her parents, James, 56, and Denise Closs, 46, were found shot dead inside.
The Barron County Sheriff’s Department confirmed Jayme was found at Eau Claire Acres, a development located about 70 miles away from her home.
The teen approached a woman walking her dog, and told the stranger she had been kidnapped and that a man killed her parents.
Jayme was found at Eau Claire Acres, a development located about 70 miles away from her home in Barron
Dogwalker Jeanne Nutter went with Jayme to her neighbors house and pounded on their door. She says Jayme had walked away from a cabin not far from her place where she had been held.
Nutter, a social worker, said: ‘I went to her and she just sort of grabbed onto me and she told me who she was. She’s a traumatized child. I believe she was just maybe in shock.
‘I’m just happy that she’s safe. I feel like it’s sort of a miracle that she’s still alive. I’m glad my dog wanted to go for a walk and we did and there she was. My goal was to get her to a safe place and I did. The police were amazing.’
Kristin and Peter Kasinskas say their neighbor had a skinny, dirty girl with matted hair, wearing shoes several sizes too big for her feet standing next to her. The neighbor shouted, ‘This is Jayme Closs! Call 911!’
Kristin told the Today Show: ‘She knocked on our door, and then actually opened our door and said call 911.
‘She seemed kind of in shock and kind of timid, but she did talk to us a little bit, and she came in and sat down in our living room and was able to have a conversation with us.’
The home where teenager Jayme Closs lived with her parents before their brutal murder three months ago pictured Friday
The entrance to Eau Claire Acres in Gordon, Wisconsin where Jake Thomas Patterson was arrested in the kidnapping of Jayme Closs and the murder of her parents
‘She looked thinner than her pictures. We offered her a beverage. We offered her something to eat. She said she didn’t want anything to eat or drink,’ Kristin Kasinskas, who found Jayme (pictured), said
Kristin Kasinskas neighbor who called 911- Jayme Closs and the dog walker approached the home of Kristin Kasinskas, pictured, and asked her to call 911
A thank you sign is displayed in Barron after Jayme was found alive more than three months after she disappeared. It reads: ‘Thank you for bringing her home’
A ‘Welcome Home Jayme’ sign is displayed for the teen’s return home on January 11, 2019 in Barron, Wisconsin
The entrance to Eau Claire Acres in Gordon, Wisconsin where Jake Thomas Patterson was arrested over the kidnapping of Jayme Closs and the murder of her parents
Kidnap victim Elizabeth Smart paid tribute to Jayme and has offered her support to the ‘brave, strong and powerful 13-year-old survivor’.
She wrote in an emotional Instagram post: ‘What a miracle!!! Jayme Closs has been found!!!! I’m so thrilled to hear the news. What has been such a heart wrenching tragedy finally has some happiness in the story.’
Smart said she would expect that Jayme will have to confront the fact that there ‘is no going back to the way things were’. She said she recommends that Jayme’s friends and family give her space and allow her to make her own decisions.
Elizabeth was was 14 when she was held in the woods by Wandaa Barzee and Brian David Mitchell for nine months.
Kidnap victim Elizabeth Smart has paid tribute to fellow kidnapping victim Jayme Closs and has offered her support to the teen who was found Thursday
Elizabeth Smart was kidnapped for nine months in 2002 aged 14 in Salt Lake City, Utah. She is pictured in March 2018