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Wisconsin man arrested in teen's abduction, parents' deaths

12 January 2019

The call was "pinged" to the Closs home.

Douglas County Sheriff Thomas Dalbec said at a news conference Friday that Jake Thomas Patterson was arrested Thursday after Jayme Closs was found near the Town of Gordon, where Patterson lives. 88 days of holding onto the faith that our authorities would never give up, and they certainly did not, 88 days with the same goal in mind: "that was to bring Jayme home and back into our arms", Barron Area School District Administrator Diane Tremblay said. She says she and her husband once caught them siphoning gas. "It was like I was seeing a ghost", Mr Kasinskas told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Jake Thomas Patterson was taken into custody shortly after 13-year-old Jayme Closs sought help from a woman walking her dog in a rural, heavily wooded neighborhood near the small town of Gordon, about 60 miles north of Barron.

"I could tell you the suspect planned his actions and took many steps to hide his identity from law enforcement", Fitzgerald said. The decorations spelled out her name in big, glittery letters, and they included green bulbs and ribbons.

"She saw this girl screaming 'help me, help me, '" Kasinskas told the station of his neighbor.

"Authorities say Jayme escaped from a cabin in the town of Gordon on Thursday and they arrested Patterson on homicide and kidnapping charges".

Smart posted Friday on her Instagram account that she was thrilled Jayme had been found.

But Kasinskas said Jayme told her she had been held in the Gordon area - near Kasinskas' home - by someone who killed her parents on the night she disappeared.

It's unclear how the suspect knew Jayme, Fitzgerald said. The "unusual" call had no communication from the caller, just yelling and a cry for help in the background, police said according to NBC News. Nutter says her goal was to get Jayme to a safe place where the police could be called, so they went to a neighbor's house. She said she taught him middle school science but only remembered that he was quiet.

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According to Closs's aunt Sue Allard, the teenager was found after escaping and finding a woman walking her dog in a housing development outside the town.

Police found her parents James Closs, 56, and Denise Closs, 46, shot dead, and undertook a nationwide search for Jayme, describing her as "endangered", but the trail had gone cold until Thursday.

Elizabeth Smart says it is a "miracle" that a 13-year-old Wisconsin girl missing for almost three months has been found safe.

Witnesses told United States media that Closs had approached a neighbor of the suspect for help while the neighbor was walking her dog at approximately 4:00 pm Thursday. The girl confirmed she was indeed Jayme Closs.

Her grandfather, Robert Naiberg, told the AP that his daughter told him that Jayme had been held by "a guy in the woods" but had managed to flee.

Authorities discovered Jayme was missing on October 15 of past year, after her parents - James, 56, and Denise Closs, 46 - were found murdered inside a home on the outskirts of Barron, Wisconsin.

Smith, Jayme's godmother, told CNN affiliate WCCO that Jayme was recovering in a hospital near Duluth, Minnesota, and is expected to be released Friday.

The notification that Jayme had been found came just four hours after Fitzgerald had taken to Twitter to debunk a report that she had been found alive near Walworth County. Jayme disappeared from her family's home near Barron after her parents were killed October 15. Jayme had not been seen since her parents were murdered there on October 15.

Wisconsin man arrested in teen's abduction, parents' deaths