Jayme Closs: Suspect named in kidnapping and murder case

Suspect and victim compoImage copyright

Image caption

Jake Thomas Patterson, 21, has been arrested over the kidnapping of Jayme Closs

Police have named a suspect in the case of a 13-year-old Wisconsin girl who was kidnapped in October after her parents were murdered.

Jake Thomas Patterson, 21, is being held on two counts of first-degree homicide and one count of kidnapping, police said on Friday.

Jayme Closs was located on Thursday evening and is to be reunited with her family, said police.

Police believe the 13-year-old was the suspect’s “only target”.

Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said Mr Patterson has no criminal history in the state of Wisconsin.

Investigators believe he murdered Jayme’s parents in order to abduct her and took “many proactive steps” to hide his identity from law enforcement and the public.

Media playback is unsupported on your device

Media captionAunt tearfully reacts to missing Wisconsin girl found safe

Sheriff Fitzgerald noted police information was still “limited” and Jayme is still being interviewed by officials.

“There is a reunification process in place going on right now that includes medical mental evaluation, questioning by detectives and FBI agents, and then reunification with family,” he said.

Jayme was found on Thursday in the small town of Gordon, some 70 miles (112km) away from her home in Barron.

Police say she had escaped on foot from a remote cabin.

According to Douglas County Sheriff Tom Dalbec, Gordon police located and arrested Mr Patterson thanks to a description of his vehicle that Jayme provided.

Mr Patterson was interviewed by Douglas County officials and then transported to the Barron County jail.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune quoted a teacher at a local school as saying a neighbour walking her dog had knocked on her door after having found Jayme.

The teacher said Jayme was skinny, dirty and wearing shoes too large for her feet.

“This is Jayme Closs! Call 911!” the neighbour told the teacher, according to the Star Tribune.

Jayme stayed at the teacher’s home for about 20 minutes and declined food and water, Associated Press reports.

On Monday 15 October 2018, emergency services received a call at the Closs family address in Barron from a mobile phone. They heard a disturbance in the background, but no-one spoke to them directly.

When police arrived four minutes later, no gun or suspects were found at the scene and there was no sign of Jayme.

The following Wednesday, the deaths of James and Denise Closs were officially ruled as homicide by a medical examiner.

Source link