U.S. girl, 13, found alive three months after murder of parents

Posted January 14, 2019

Katie Beers' joy quickly turned to deep concern when she learned 13-year-old Jayme Closs had been found alive in rural Wisconsin almost three months after police say a man shot and killed her parents then abducted the girl from their home.

Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald gave an update Saturday, calling the case still "very active". Authorities are trying to track down their movements over the past three months to see what they can learn.

Barron Mayor Ron Fladten said he hadn't heard any details about Jayme's discovery but was overjoyed at learning she is alive.

"While I don't know how she escaped at this time, we believe that the suspect was out looking for her when law enforcement made contact with him", Fitzgerald said Friday.

The Kasinskas said Jayme's emotions were "pretty flat" while they waited for the police and she refused offers of food and water.

Jayme told the woman she had escaped from a cabin where she was being held, not far from Ms Nutter's home.

Her aunt will be her guardian, a family friend tells PEOPLE.

More news: Google Assistant aims for dominance at CES

For most child kidnapping victims, they have the hope that their parents will find them, "but in this case she knew her folks were dead and couldn't find her", Bowers said.

The president of the Jennie-O Turkey store in Barron, where James and Denise Closs had worked for decades, said Patterson had been an employee for a single day three years ago.

"I had him as a middle school student in science class", Kristin Kasinskas said.

Jayme disappeared from her home near Barron after someone blasted their way in and shot her parents, James and Denise Closs, on October 15.

Jayme's grandfather, Robert Naiberg, said he had been praying for months for the call he received about his granddaughter. His initial court hearing is scheduled for Monday and records showed he does not have an attorney.

She was subsequently rescued when she approached a woman for help who was walking her dog just outside of Gordon, Wisconsin, according to the Star-Tribune.

Jayme Closs's aunt, Jennifer Naiberg Smith, posted an update on Jayme's condition Saturday morning, shared via the Healing For Jayme Closs Facebook page.

More news: Apple admits it is going to miss iPhone sales

Fitzgerald said officials did not yet know how she escaped, saying only that she had been released from the hospital and was being reunited with family.

A 21-year-old man killed a Wisconsin couple in a scheme to kidnap their teenage daughter, then held the girl captive for almost three months before she managed to escape and reach safety as he drove around looking for her, authorities said.

Jake Thomas Patterson, 21, was arrested Thursday in Gordon, Wisconsin shortly after authorities say Jayme was able to escape from the home when Patterson was believed to have been out. Nutter said Jayme did not have a coat or gloves.

"I have no clue who they are", she said.

Elizabeth Smart, who was held captive for nine months as a teenager after her 2002 abduction in Utah, posted a photo of Closs on Instagram, praising the "miracle" that she had been found.

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

"She is doing great", Fitzgerald told CNN's "Anderson Cooper Full Circle".

More news: Students and fans of Clemson University celebrate championship