Who is Jayme Closs, when was the teenager kidnapped and why was she honoured as a local hero?

JAYME Closs went missing in January – but was she ever found?

Here’s our lowdown on the teenage kidnapping victim…

Young teen Jayme Closs had been missing since the early hours of October 15, 2018
AP:Associated Press

Who is Jayme Closs and when was she kidnapped?

Jayme Closs was a missing teen who vanished after her parents were shot dead at their home in October 2018.

On January 11, 2019, she was found alive after fleeing the a rural house where she had been held captive.

Reports claim she was found in the town of Gordon at 4.43pm on Thursday, January 10.

The teen fled the property – 70 miles from where her mum and dad were gunned down in Wisconsin – and flagged down a dog walker for help.

A suspect was taken into custody and has been identified as Jake Thomas Patterson, according to CNN.

He is 21 and unemployed.

He has been charged with kidnapping Jayme, killing her parents and armed robbery.

Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said: “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.”

Patterson told detectives that “he knew that was the girl he was going to take” after he spotted her getting on a school bus, court documents say.

He made two aborted trips to her family’s home before finally carrying out an attack in which he shot dead Jayme’s parents – including her mother as she sat tied next to her, according to a criminal complaint filed on Monday.

Patterson’s first court appearance was on Monday January 14 and the judge set bail at £3.9million ($5million).

When did Jayme Closs go missing and how old is she?

Jayme Closs, 13, had been missing since her parents, aged 56 and 46, were discovered shot dead in their family home in Barron, Wisconsin, in the early hours of Monday, October 15, 2018..

A 911 phone call was made from the family home, but when police officers arrived just minutes later, they found both of the young teen’s parents James and Denise fatally shot and Jayme missing.

Joan Smrekar, who lives next door to the Closs home said she heard two shots a couple of seconds apart just after 12.30am on Monday.

“It was just, ‘bang’ and ‘bang,’” Ms Smrekar said.

In the phone call, authorities said a “disturbance” could be heard in the background.

Jayme was immediately ruled out as a suspect and a runaway, cops said.

Her parents’ deaths have been ruled as homicides, but no gun was found at the scene, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said.

Jayme’s dad James, 56. Police believe Jayme is still alive but is in danger
 

The Sheriff added that Jayme was in the family’s home when her parents were killed based on evidence from both the scene and from the 911 call.

Fitzgerald said the phone the call was made from had been recovered and they had since determined who it belonged to – but he did not identify the owner of the phone.

There was no one speaking to the dispatcher on the phone but “some kind of disturbance could be heard”, he said.

The FBI joined the investigation into the teen’s disappearance and appealed for help in tracing Jayme.

Searches have been carried out around the Closs family home and surrounding area, with drones and infared equipment also deployed.

According to CNN, Barron Area School District administrator Diane Tremblay said Jayme, a member of her school’s cross-country team, is a “sweet girl who is a loyal friend and loves to dance”.

During a recent school assignment, Jayme was asked what she would do with $1million, and she wrote that she would “feed the hungry and give the rest to the poor”.


Why was she honoured as a local hero

Jayme Closs was honoured as a ‘local hero’ by politicians in her Wisconsin hometown.
Presenting the award, Representative Romaine Quinn said: “Jamie, your strength, your resolve, and your bravery is beyond incredible. You are truly an inspiration and a bright light during a time of sadness,” Quinn said.

“You taught us an important lesson: no matter how grave your situation, no matter how dark your days become and no matter how impossible your circumstances may seem, there is always hope.”


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