Kidnapped US teen found alive months after parents’ murder
Gordon, US - A 21 year old man has been charged with murdering the parents of an American teen as part of a calculated plot to kidnap her, police said on Friday, after 13 year old Jayme Closs was found alive following three months in captivity.
The subject of a nationwide search since her parents were found murdered in their home in rural Wisconsin in October, Closs made a seemingly miraculous escape on Thursday afternoon, seeking help from a neighbour who alerted authorities.
Minutes later, police arrested the man she identified as her captor, Jake Thomas Patterson, and have charged him with abducting Closs and fatally shooting her parents.
“Jayme was taken against her will and escaped from the residence in which she was being held and found help,” Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said.
The teen is said to be in good health and is to be reunited with her extended family. “She is doing as well as circumstances will allow,” Fitzgerald said.
Patterson, who had no previous criminal record in Wisconsin, is accused of carefully planning his attack - specifically targeting the young teen for reasons that remained unclear.
He is to appear in court on Monday.
Closs was being held in a rural home approximately 120km north of her home in Barron, Wisconsin.
She escaped and ran to a vacation cabin where Jeanne Nutter was just returning from walking her dog at around 4:30pm on Thursday.
“She said she was lost, she didn’t know where she was,” Nutter said.
”I didn’t know the situation until she got near me, and then she told me her name, and I knew who she was because I’d seen her picture everywhere.”
The 66 year old took the teen to a neighbour’s home, where they called police.
Jayme Closs (right)