Jayme Closs has been reunited with his family and his alleged kidnapper is expected to make his first court appearance on Monday, where he will be formally charged with kidnapping and murder, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said Friday.
Fitzgerald said the 13-year-old girl was reunited with her aunt on Friday afternoon and is expected to join the rest of her family soon.
"He is doing as well as circumstances allow," he said at 4 p.m. Press conference outside your office here. "I have not seen or talked to her personally yet, which I'm anxious to do.
"Jayme is the hero in this case, there's no doubt about it," he added.
Jake T. Patterson, 21, will appear at 3:30 p.m. Monday, local time, at the Circuit Court of Barron County, where he will be charged with kidnapping and two counts of first degree murder for allegedly murdering Jayme's parents in the early morning hours of October 15, and then take it.
Fitzgerald said investigators found a shotgun in the rural Wisconsin house where Patterson allegedly kept Jayme, which was consistent with what was used the morning his parents were killed. They are waiting for laboratory tests to confirm that it is the same weapon. Other weapons were found in the house, he said.
Fitzgerald again pointed out that Patterson "made great efforts to minimize his forensic footprint at the crime scene," even shaving his head so as not to leave his hair behind. He reiterated that Patterson had no relationship with the Closs family, but he did not know why he chose Jayme as his target.
"Nothing in this case shows that the suspect has ever met someone in Closs's house or had any contact with anyone in Closs's family," Fitzgerald said. "The suspect had specific intentions of kidnapping Jayme and worked hard to prepare to take her."
Fitzgerald said Patterson was not at Gordon's house in Wisconsin, where he lived when Jayme escaped, and they think he was looking for her when he was arrested.
Jayme was several miles outside of Gordon, about an hour's drive north of his house, late on Thursday afternoon, and Patterson was quickly stopped in a nearby car and arrested without resistance thanks to the description of the vehicle the teenager provided, said Douglas County Sheriff Tom Dalbec. during a press conference on Friday morning in Barron.
Jayme was scruffy and thin on Thursday afternoon after escaping her captor and seeking help from her neighbors in a remote area several miles from Gordon.
At the press conference on Friday morning, all law enforcement officials and others who spoke during the press conference praised the teenager for surviving, escaping and providing the key information that led to the arrest of the man responsible for fatally shooting her. his parents and keep them captive and undetected for weeks.
"We needed a break in this case," said Justin Tolomeo, special agent in charge of the FBI's Milwaukee Division. "It was Jayme herself who gave us that rest."
Fitzgerald said Patterson acted alone, specifically targeted Jayme and was in jail on Friday.
"It's amazing, the will of that 13-year-old girl to survive and escape," Fitzgerald said.
District Attorney Brian Wright said he does not believe Patterson, who is said to be unemployed, has had prior contact with the Closs family.
Patterson was hired at the Jennie-O Turkey Store in Barron three years ago, but resigned the next day, according to Steve Lykken, president of Jennie-O Turkey Store. Jayme's parents, James and Denise Closs, worked at the company for 27 years.
Lykken said Patterson resigned after being hired, saying he was moving out of the area. "He has not worked with Jennie-O since then," Lykken said in the written statement.
Fitzgerald said Friday morning that Jayme had been discharged from the hospital and was in the midst of mental and physical evaluations, questioned by the FBI and the detectives before reuniting with her family.
Fitzgerald said Patterson has no criminal record in Wisconsin or the Gordon area and "was not on our radar." Patterson has ties to Barron, Fitzgerald said, but he did not say what those links were.
Diane Tremblay, the superintendent of the school district where Jayme attended the class, told the morning news meeting: "Today there is a lot of love and hugs in our district. It is simply insurmountable.
"We want to thank Jayme for being so brave and finding the opportunity to come back to us. What an extraordinary young lady."
The community of 3,400 residents already showed signs of celebrating on Friday, as the sign in front of Barron City Hall had already been changed to read "Welcome home, Jayme," reported The Leader-Telegram in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.
"Everyone is delighted," city lineman Jeremy Schlosser told the newspaper, who was fixing the billboard Friday morning. "I guess they stopped the basketball game (Thursday night) to announce it."
The mayor of Barron, Ron Fladten, said: "I was impressed, that was the initial reaction."
"The community has handled all this very well," said Fladten. "Boom! A miracle happened, it's a lot to process. It's almost incredible, there are so many cases with sad endings, so it's a lot to absorb."
"It's a miracle," resident Ron Wheeler said as he ate an egg and ham breakfast at the Seasons Cafe counter. "Everyone thought she would never come back."
Jayme had not been seen or heard since his disappearance in the early hours of October 15. In the following days several intensive searches were carried out in the area, but none gave valid clues, and for weeks Fitzgerald went on to say that the authorities had no new potential clients.
According to Douglas County Sheriff Jayme escaped east of Gordon at 4:43 p.m. Thursday, and Patterson was arrested minutes later. They examined her in a hospital on Thursday night in the Duluth-Superior area.
Jeanne Nutter was walking with her golden retriever, Henry, on Thursday afternoon when she saw a girl walking towards her. When the girl approached, Nutter knew almost immediately that it was Jayme because of the photo that had been in the news for months and pasted on business posters.
The girl wore pants and shoes that obviously were not hers, a loose coat or a sweatshirt.
"She was very calm, so I tried to keep my composure," Nutter said Friday.
"The first thing she said to me was:" I'm lost and I do not know where I am and I need help. "
She and the girl went to a nearby house, where Kristin and Peter Kasinskas live. "This is Jayme Closs! Call 911!" The Nutter told the couple.
Jayme was calm, her emotions "fairly flat," said Peter Kasinskas.
Jayme did not know anyone had been looking for her and was surprised that the couple knew Patterson's name. Jayme said she did not know him before he kidnapped her.
"He killed my parents and took me away," said Peter Kasinskas recalling that Jayme said.
Jayme told the couple that other people had been in the house during the time she was held there, but Patterson kept it hidden.
Jayme said Patterson was gone when she ran away, but he said he would come back at midnight.
Peter Kasinskas said that he and his wife did not ask Jayme questions about the details of his captivity.
"We did not want to ask too many questions other than to take the police there and put them safe," said Peter Kasinskas. They wrapped Jayme in a blanket and offered him food and drink. She wanted nothing more than to play with the couple's puppy.
When the police called to say that Patterson was returning home, the couple lowered the children. The police had it within five minutes, the couple said.
The sparsely populated area where Jayme was located is a group of approximately 30 houses originally built about 50 years ago as cabins near the Eau Claire River. Most of the homes are unoccupied during the winter months. The land is mountainous and very forested. Many houses are behind the trees.
Before dawn on Friday in Barron, the Dairy Queen sign was blinking: "Welcome home, Jayme, thanks for bringing her home.
"It's like a dark cloud has been hanging over our head for about 88 days," said Fladten.
Liz Sawyer, Mary Lynn Smith, Karen Zamora Y Matt McKinney contributed to this report.