BARRON, Wis. — A 21-year-old man has been jailed in the deaths of a Wisconsin couple he killed because he wanted to kidnap their teenage daughter, investigators said Friday, a day after the girl approached a stranger along a rural road saying she’d been abducted in October and held against her will.
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.
Jayme disappeared from her family’s home in Barron when her parents were killed Oct. 15.
During a news conference Friday, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said Jayme was taken against her will. The sheriff also said investigators don’t believe Patterson had any contact with the family.
Fitzgerald said investigators believe Patterson killed Jayme’s parents because he wanted to abduct her, and that Patterson “planned his actions and took many steps to hide his identity.”
Fitzgerald said investigators believe the girl was “the only target.”
A woman said she was walking her dog along a rural road Thursday afternoon when a disheveled teenage girl called out to her for help, quickly grabbed her and told her she was lost. Only then did the girl reveal her name.
Jeanne Nutter said Friday that Jayme told her she had walked away from a cabin where she’d been held captive, a cabin not far from Nutter’s home.