Wisconsin man admits kidnapping Jayme Closs, 13, after killing her parents

By Joey Peters BARRON, Wis. (Reuters) - Jake Patterson pleaded guilty in a Wisconsin court on Wednesday to kidnapping 13-year-old Jayme Closs and murdering her parents in a case that sparked a months-long search for the girl and ended with her escape and his arrest. Patterson, 21, who told authorities that he randomly decided to abduct Closs after watching her board a school bus, tearfully responded 'guilty' to the judge's reading of the charges of two counts of first-degree murder in the killings of James and Denise Closs and the kidnapping of Jayme, which will likely result in a life sentence

Reuters March 28, 2019 02:06:22 IST
Wisconsin man admits kidnapping Jayme Closs, 13, after killing her parents

Wisconsin man admits kidnapping Jayme Closs 13 after killing her parents

By Joey Peters

BARRON, Wis. (Reuters) - Jake Patterson pleaded guilty in a Wisconsin court on Wednesday to kidnapping 13-year-old Jayme Closs and murdering her parents in a case that sparked a months-long search for the girl and ended with her escape and his arrest.

Patterson, 21, who told authorities that he randomly decided to abduct Closs after watching her board a school bus, tearfully responded "guilty" to the judge's reading of the charges of two counts of first-degree murder in the killings of James and Denise Closs and the kidnapping of Jayme, which will likely result in a life sentence.

"This is what he's wanted to do, he's been consistent with that from the time that we met," Patterson's attorney, Richard Jones, told Barron County Circuit Judge James Babler.

The judge scheduled Patterson's sentencing hearing for May 24.

Nearly two dozen of Closs' family members attended Wednesday's hearing. Patterson's father and sister were present, and both put their heads down and wept as the judge read the charges.

As sheriff's deputies escorted Patterson out of the courtroom, he turned to a news camera and said, "Bye, Jayme," to an audible groan from one of her family members.

Patterson admitted that on Oct. 15 he shot and killed the father through the front door of the family home in Barron, in Barron County, with a shotgun, killed his wife in a bathtub and duct-taped Jayme's mouth and stuffed her in the trunk of his car, according to police.

Patterson held Jayme hostage for 88 days in his rural cabin in Gordon in Douglas County, about 112 miles (180 km) northeast of Minneapolis, according to prosecutors. Patterson kept the girl locked in his room and barricaded her under his bed when he had guests, according to court documents.

Jayme's abduction and the murder of her parents terrified their small, close-knit community. Hundreds of police officers and thousands of volunteers searched for Jayme from October to January, when she escaped from Patterson's cabin.

As part of the plea deal, Patterson is not being charged in Douglas County, where he is accused of holding Jayme captive. As a result, details of the girl's ordeal in his home may never come to light.

In a letter he wrote from jail to a local television station earlier this month, Patterson said he planned to plead guilty to the charges and that he felt "huge amounts" of remorse.

(Writing by Gabriella Borter in New York; Editing by Scott Malone and Matthew Lewis)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.