Thirteen year old Jayme Closs was abducted from her home in Barron County, WI on October 15th, 2018. Her kidnapper murdered both her parents and bundled her into the trunk of his vehicle before speeding off into the night. As time passed and nothing was heard from the missing teenager, those following the case began to lose hope that she was alive, but miraculously, after a total of 88 days in captivity, the teenager stumbled up to a resident living in S. Eau Claire Acres Cir , Gordon, WI and announced: “I’m Jayme Closs. He killed my parents. I want to go home”.
Soon she was in the safe hands of her Auntie and Godmother. Her abductor, 22-year-old Jake T. Patterson was arrested.
People rejoiced Closs’ safe return but little was revealed about what happened to her that night and thereafter, until the recent release of documents detailing the events was released publicly.
On the night her life would change forever Jayme Closs was awoken by the barking of the family dog. She peered out of the window to see a vehicle that she didn’t recognize pulling up into the driveway. Concerned, she quickly alerted her sleeping parents, and her father, James, went to the front door to Investigate while his wife and daughter hid in the bathroom.
22-Year-old Patterson was standing on the other side of the door, clad head to toe in black and wielding a shotgun and he had every intention of killing every eyewitness to the crime he was about to commit. Jayme could do nothing but cower in the bathtub with her mother as the gunshot that killed her father rang out and resonated. Her mother managed to dial 911 to report the intruder but the call was interrupted midway through as the assailant broke through the door and demanded she hang up. Jayme’s mother, Denise, did exactly as she was told as the man in black loomed over the helpless mother and daughter.
He forced Denise to silence Jayme with a strip of duct tape over her mouth before shooting the woman in the head, instantly executing her in front of her own child with a single shot.
Jayme was then taped at the wrists and marched outside, where she was forced into the trunk of her kidnapper’s vehicle. Patterson then took off and began driving back to his home in Gordon, over an hour’s drive from Jayme’s home in Barron.
New dash cam footage from the police cars responding to the call show Patterson’s vehicle passing them. The officers discuss running the licence plates of every car passing them along the way, but when they ran Patterson’s plates, they came up with nothing.
Officers arrived at a dark and empty house. They soon found the bodies of both James and Denise Closs and were soon alerted that their 13-year-old daughter was not accounted for. A missing alert was put out and search for what happened to the teenager was soon underway.
Upon arriving to Patterson’s address, Jayme was forced to undress. Some reports state that she was given a pair of his sister's pajamas to change into and others state that she was given some of Patterson’s clothes while he burned hers to dispose of evidence.
She was then forced to crawl under his bed where she would remain for long periods of time without food and water and the bed was blocked off and weighted down so she could not move it to escape. Shockingly the 22-year-old did not live alone, so he would leave music playing loudly in the room to cover up any attempts to signal for help.
He threatened his victim with death and punishment if she was to attempt to escape and told police that he believed he had Jayme under his control; “I know that she was just fucking terrified of me” he later told police. So confident was Patterson in his so-called “mind stuff” that he decided not to take extra precautions to make sure Jayme did not escape through any windows or doors in the house.
Documents released by the Department of Justice show that Patterson was forthcoming with details when questioned about his crimes. He told investigators that he had planned to abduct a teenage girl for around a year and that “if it wasn’t Jayme it would have been someone else”. He said there was no specific reason for choosing Closs other than the fact he just happened to see her getting off a bus one day and began to plan the abduction. He confessed that he had tried to kidnap her on two previous occasions, but the time wasn’t right.
Previous to the double homicide and kidnapping Patterson had no previous criminal record. He was described as a quiet young man who kept to himself and did alright at school.
During her 88 days captive in Patterson’s rural home, Jayme was mostly kept under the bed, although she was permitted to take walks with her captor around the yard on occasion.
He physically hurt her on one occasion, beating her on the back with a cleaning implement, but Closs claims she cannot recall the event that triggered the punishment. He also attempted to conceal her identity at one point by telling her he was going to cut her hair but decided against it after Closs resisted and said she didn’t want to.
The two played board games and on one occasion Patterson even brought back a Starbucks drink for the girl.
He told officers that the two conversed a lot but never went into detail about how Patterson had murdered her parents that night and he claimed to feel so guilt ridden about it that one night he drank himself into a stupor and promised that if she wrote a letter to her Auntie that he would send it; however the following day when he sobered up he decided against it, believing that he had gotten away with his crimes.
Patterson admitted that he did have sexual fantasies regarding his victim and that they slept in the same bed, but said he was too guilty to “act on it” after making her an orphan.
Jayme may have been terrified of her captor, and also traumatized by what she witnessed on the night of October 15th, 2018, but she was brave enough to successfully attempt an escape and alert a passer-by for help.
These days Jayme lives with her Auntie and Jake Patterson is serving out a sentence in a New Mexico prison.