Missing Girl Jayme Closs Rescued After Months in Captivity & the Details Are Unthinkable

Barron County Sheriff's Department

Jayme Closs, a 13-year-old Wisconsin girl who's been missing for three long months, has miraculously been found alive after escaping on her own and fleeing captivity. An Amber Alert was issued for Closs after both of her parents were found shot to death in their home on October 15. Police feared the missing teen may have been abducted and was in grave danger. Now, police are revealing more details about what happened to her and how she escaped. 

  • Closs flagged down a stranger walking her dog on Thursday and asked for help.

    The woman, who immediately recognized her, took Closs to the closest neighbor and asked for help. A Gordon, Wisconsin, woman named Kristin Kasinskas told the Star Tribune she was home on Thursday when a neighbor came to her door with a dirty and frail girl.

    This is Jayme Closs! Call 911," the neighbor, who asked not to be identified by the media, reportedly said. The neighbor had been walking her dog when Closs reportedly approached her and asked for help. Kasinskas said she called police and offered Closs food and water, but the girl declined. 

    "It was like I was seeing a ghost,” said Kasinskas's husband, Peter. “It was scary and awesome at the same time. My jaw just went to the floor.”

    Jayme reportedly told the Kasinskases that she didn’t know where she was or anything about the town of Gordon. After about 20 minutes, police arrived, and a suspect was arrested shortly after.

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  • In a press conference today, police named the suspect, 21-year-old Jake Thomas Patterson of Gordon.

    According to officials at a press conference on Friday morning, Patterson has no criminal history and is believed to have acted alone with the main intention of abducting Jayme.

    Although authorities have yet to reveal how Jayme managed to escape on foot, they explained that the woman she flagged down immediately recognized her. After deputies responded to the 911 call, Closs gave them a description of a car. A short time later, Patterson was discovered and arrested. He now is in custody and was charged with two counts of first degree intentional homicide in the murder of Closs's parents and one count of kidnapping.

    Closs was taken to a local hospital, held overnight for observation, and has been medically cleared. According to investigators, Closs was the sole target and not her parents.

    Closs was being held in a home in a remote area outside of Gordon, but it's still unknown if she was held there throughout her 88 days in captivity. 

    Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said during the press conference that officials don’t believe Patterson previously had contact with Closs and her family before planning the abduction. 

    "Jayme was taken against her will and escaped from the residence at which she was being held,” 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.”

    Fitzgerald added that the area where Jayme was being held wasn’t on their radar and that her independent escape is incredible. "That is the will of a kid to survive,” he said. "It’s amazing, the will of that 13-year-old girl to survive and live." 
  • The search for Closs began with an anonymous 911 call around 1 a.m. October 15.

    Police arrived at her rural home in Barron, Wisconsin, to find the front door kicked in and Jayme's parents, James and Denise, shot to death, but no sign of Jayme. From the start, police considered Jayme to be in danger and said she had nothing to do with her parents' deaths. Police appealed to the public for information but no one had answers. Over the next three months, they investigated thousands of tips and leads and a $50,000 reward was offered for her safe return, according to CNN.

  • Closs's aunt, Jennifer Smith, told Good Morning America she'll be reunited with Jayme this afternoon, once the girl is released from the hospital.

    Police say Jayme is doing well following her ordeal. "We are just happy everyone kept praying and didn't give up hope, like we didn't," Smith told ABC News Thursday evening. "A lot of happy tears in this house tonight."