The man suspected of kidnapping Jayme Closs and killing her parents in their Wisconsin home allegedly decided to take the 13-year-old after spotting her getting onto a school bus one day, accordng to a criminal complaint filed in court.
Jake Thomas Patterson, 21, will be formally charged with two counts of murder and one count of kidnapping before his afternoon hearing in Barron County Circuit Court, according to prosecutors.
A criminal complaint alleges Mr Patterson told investigators that, on his drive to a job at a cheese factor in Almena, Wisconsin, he spotted Jayme get on the school bus one day and came up with the idea to abduct her.
“He knew that was the girl he was going to take,” the criminal complaint said.
Investigators believe Patterson broke into Jayme’s home in Barron on 15 October by blasting the front door open with a shotgun. They also believe that he shot Ms Closs’s parents, and then abducted the young girl. Jayme escaped from captivity late last week and was found in the town of Gordon northwest Wisconsin. Gordon is about an hour's drive north of Barron.
Mr Patterson allegedly went to the Closs home twice before eventually abducting Ms Closs and killing her parents. The first two attempts were unsuccessful since there were too many people around before he would be able to kidnap Ms Closs, the criminal complaint said.
Jayme is said to have told police that she allegedly tried to hide from Mr Patterson, but he dragged her from her home and threw her in the back of his vehicle. The girl was initially hiding in the bathroom with her mother when Mr Patterson came to the front door. The mother and daughter heard a gunshot, and knew at that moment Patterson killed her father, the compalint states.
Investigators said that there are no evidence linking online interactions between Mr Paterson and Jayme. The girl’s family insists that they do not know the 21-year-old suspect. Robert Naiberg, Ms Closs’s grandfather, told AP that his grand daughter told FBI agents that she does not know Mr Patterson at all.
Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald told CNN it was it “was priceless, very heartwarming” to see Ms Closs having “a big smile on her face,” after being found.
Ms Closs seems to have “some sense of peace,” after escaping and returning ro her family, Jennifer Halvorson, a friend of Jayme's aunts told People. Several photos posted of her reunion with family shows the 13-year-old smiling and hugging her relatives.
Jayme Closs “has got a big smile on her face” and “that was priceless, very heartwarming” to see, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald says, after meeting with Jayme last night https://t.co/xaD01zB9iD pic.twitter.com/rChczo21O1— New Day (@NewDay)January 14, 2019
The defence attorneys for Mr Patterson—Charles Gylnn and Richard Jones—said the believe their client can be given a fair trial. Public defenders did not reveal specification information on what they expect the court hearing will involve, but acknowledged the case was “a tragic situation from every perspective.”
“It’s been an emotional time for this community and a difficult time for this community,” Mr Jones told the Associated Press. “We don’t take that lightly. But we have a job to do in protecting our client.”
In the immediate aftermath of Ms Closs’s disappearance, more than 3,500 tips were sent to the authorities, but none of them resulted in a hard lead.
Ms Closs was found on Thursday when the teen girl went to a woman walking her dog and asked for help. The woman who discovered Ms Closs said the the girl begged for her help, and that told her that she had been in a nearby cabin. Jayme said she escaped when she was left alone.
Neighbours called 911, and police arrested Mr Patterson after Jamye provided a description of a car, according to authorities . The 21-year-old has no criminal history in Wisconsin.