Jake Thomas Patterson, 21, has been named as the man accused of kidnapping the 13-year-old girl found alive after being missing since mid-October
The Wisconsin man accused of kidnapping Jayme Closs ‘targeted’ the 13-year-old girl who was yesterday found alive after being missing since mid-October.
Police today named the man they suspect of killing her parents before abducting Jayme as 21-year-old Jake Thomas Patterson and say the family did not know the accused.
They confirmed Patterson, from Gordon, Wis., is in custody on two charges of first degree intentional homicide in the deaths of Jayme Closs’ parents and one count of kidnapping.
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 killed the Wisconsin couple because he wanted to abduct their daughter. They say she was ‘the only target’.
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.
‘There isn’t a lot of houses in that area,’ he added.
It comes as a 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.
Jayme was described as ‘skinny and dirty but outwardly OK’ by the couple who called 911 after the teenager flagged down a dogwalker in rural Wisconsin.
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 Thursday evening that Jayme has been located in Douglas County.
The board chairman of Gordon said 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 Closs, a 13-year-old girl who has been missing since mid-October, has been found alive
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 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
Jayme was found at Eau Claire Acres, a development located about 70 miles away from her home in Barron
The dogwalker, who has requested to remain anonymous, went with Jayme to her neighbors house and pounded on their door.
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 Kasinskas, who is a teacher, told the Today Show: ‘She knocked on our door, and then actually opened our door and said call 911.
‘I think we recognized Jayme immediately. I mean, her picture has been everywhere around here, billboards and things so we recognized her immediately.
‘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.’
‘She didn’t give us a ton of detail. I had asked her if she knew where Gordon, Wisconsin, was. She did not know where Gordon was, and she didn’t know where she was at the time. She was – she did state who she believed had her, and she did give us a little information about the person’s car. But other than that she didn’t give us a ton of detail about.’
Kristin was asked if the person she mentioned was someone she knew in the community. Kristin said: ‘I recognized the name when I was told it but not somebody I knew well by any means.’
Baron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald holds up a photo of the suspect, Jake Thomas Patterson, as he announces that Jayme Closs was found alive, during a news conference in Baron
Kristin Kasinskas told the Today Show: ‘She didn’t give us a ton of detail. I had asked her if she knew where Gordon, Wisconsin, was. She did not know where Gordon was, and she didn’t know where she was at the time. She was – she did state who she believed had her, and she did give us a little information about the person’s car. But other than that she didn’t give us a ton of detail about’
‘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
The Barron County Sheriff’s Department confirmed Thursday evening that Jayme has been located in Douglas County, and an unidentified male suspect has been arrested
Asked about whether Jayme told her how she escaped, Kristin said: ‘Not really. She kind of talked about being locked up or hidden when this person had to leave, but she did not go into any detail about how she got away.
Kristin and Peter Kasinskas called 911
‘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. She was comfortable. She just was cold, so we did give her a blanket, but yeah, she didn’t want food or anything to drink. I would – I guess I would describe her as looking kind of unkempt.
‘I don’t know (if she seemed afraid). It wasn’t like she was scared of us. She wasn’t crying or upset. She was just very calm.’
Peter Kasinskas tells the Minneapolis Star Tribune that Jayme was quiet and showed little emotion. He says she told them she didn’t know where she was or anything about Gordon, the small town near where she was found.
‘We do not any other details at this time as this is a very fluid and active investigation… we will not be answering any questions or taking calls on this tonight,’ the statement said.
Jayme’s name was added to the top of the FBI’s Missing Persons list and has been on digital billboards across the nation
The Barron County Sheriff’s Department confirmed Thursday evening that Jayme has been found and a suspect has been arrested
The scene on Thursday evening after Jayme was found alive in Douglas County, Wisconsin
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
The dogwalker, who has requested to remain anonymous, went with Jayme to her neighbors house, pictured, and pounded on their door asking for help
The home where teenager Jayme Closs lived with her parents before their brutal murder three months ago pictured today
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’
‘We want to thank the Douglas Co Sheriff’s Department and agencies assisting them tonight.
‘We also want to thank all the Law Enforcement agencies across the state and county that have assisted us in this case.
‘We also could not have endured this case without the support of the public and I want to thank them for all the support and help.
‘Finally, we want to especially thank the family for their support and patience while this case was ongoing.
‘We promised to bring Jayme home and tonight we get to fulfill that promise. From the bottom of my heart THANK YOU!’
Jayme’s relieved family have said the teen is ‘talking, doing great and getting rest right now’.
Her aunt, Kelly Engelhardt, told KARE 11 that the news is what the family has ‘prayed for’ every day.
‘I honestly had faith… I figured if they hadn’t found her by now that the person that did this didn’t want her dead, so I had hope. Every day there was hope. We had too much love and support around us for us to give up,’ her aunt said.
The teen’s uncle, Jeff Closs, said he is shocked and beyond grateful for the outcome they desperately hoped for
Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald pictured Friday after the teen was found alive
Volunteers cross a creek and barbed wire near Barron, Wisconsin on October 23, 2018, on their way to a ground search for Jayme
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.
Police named the man accused of kidnapping her as Jake Thomas Patterson, 21
The teen’s uncle, Jeff Closs, said he is shocked and beyond grateful for the outcome they desperately hoped for.
‘It was just unbelievable because you hear about… you’re not sure if she’s not going to be found. And when you actually hear it, it’s just unbelievable. We’re all just so grateful and happy.
‘We thought it was going to be a different ending and we’re so happy… hopefully she’s OK, we don’t know what condition. Just she’s alive.’
Her emotional grandfather Robert Naiber told GMA: ‘Wow. Whoopie. I’ve never been so happy for two months.’
The teen’s aunt Jennifer Smith added: ‘I haven’t got to see her yet but I get to see her this afternoon and I hear she is doing great and she’s getting rest right now.
‘We have her at a hospital and they’re getting her checked out and they have a suspect in custody and that’s all I know so far. She’s talking, yep, and she’s doing very well.’
Kidnap victim Elizabeth Smart has also paid tribute to Jayme and has offered her support to the ‘brave, strong and powerful 13-year-old survivor’.
Smart wrote in the 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 was was 14 when she was held in the woods by Wandaa Barzee and Brian David Mitchell for nine months.
Jayme’s name was added to the top of the FBI’s Missing Persons list and has been on digital billboards across the nation since she vanished four months ago.
In December, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald shared troubling details about the crime scene with DailyMail.com.
Fitzgerald said the killer was in the Closs home for only four minutes, during which they stepped just five feet into the open plan house, shot James and Denise and took Jayme.
Both Denise and James died ‘instantly’ of their wounds, the sheriff said.
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
Despite a mysterious inaudible 911 call made from her mother’s cell at 12.54am, when police arrived at 12.58am, they revealed there was no sign that Jayme resisted her abductor. There was nothing taken and nothing disturbed.
In fact, there was no forensic evidence of any intruder at all.
Fitzgerald said: ‘That’s the frustrating part of it. We’ve had four different lab teams look at the scene before we released it. We were very strategic. When we discovered it was a major crime, we sealed it off immediately.
‘But if I’m in your house for minutes and I only step five feet inside your home I’m probably not going to leave a big footprint.’
He added: ‘It doesn’t appear that anything was taken, it doesn’t appear that Jayme packed up any clothing.’
Law enforcement officials haven’t ruled out that Jayme unwittingly played a part in the crime.
Fitzgerald, however, said at a press conference in October: ‘I’m telling you – Jayme is missing and endangered.’
Searches of her social media, cell phone and computer have offered no evidence of a boyfriend or anyone she met anyone online who might have targeted her or her parents.