As she waited for police to arrive after she escaped her months-long abduction, 13-year-old Jayme Closs sat in a Wisconsin couple’s room playing with their new puppy, the couple told the Star Tribune.
Moments earlier, Jayme had escaped from a home nearby in Gordon, where authorities say she was being kept by a 21-year-old man accused of kidnapping her and killing her parents nearly three months earlier.
“She seemed kind of in shock and kind of timid, but she did talk to us a little bit,” Kristin Kasinskas, who owns the puppy and took Jayme into her home, told Today of the moment. “It wasn’t like she was scared of us. She wasn’t crying or upset. She was just very calm.”
Jayme had been missing after vanishing on October 15 — the same night her parents were found dead in their home in Barron, Wisconsin, nearly 70 miles south of Gordon. She had been declared “missing and endangered,” an AMBER Alert was issued for her and thousands of people joined investigators in their search for her.
On Thursday afternoon, Jayme ran from the cabin to a woman walking her dog asking for help, saying she was Jayme Closs and that she had been kidnapped, the Star Tribune reports. The dog walker took Jayme to the Kasinskas’s house and frantically told them to call 911.
“She didn’t know where she was at the time. She did state who she believed had her, and she did give us a little information about the person’s car.” Neighbor who called 911 when Jayme Closs came to her door speaks out pic.twitter.com/1J1T8PEcCk— TODAY (@TODAYshow) January 11, 2019
• Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.
The puppy provided comfort to Jayme, who had a dog before she disappeared.
“Jayme has a little dog. A little tiny dog that was unharmed, oddly enough, in all of this. The dog has been with family waiting for her” Jodie Arnold, 39, a cousin of Jayme’s late mom, tells PEOPLE.
Jayme was not familiar with the area, Kasinskas told Today. “I asked her if she knew where Gordon, Wisconsin, was [and] she did not.
On Friday, police identified the man they allege killed Jayme’ parents before abducting the teen as Jake Thomas Patterson of Gordon. Patterson, 21, has been charged with two counts of first-degree intentional homicide and one of kidnapping.
Patterson, who is unemployed, was not on the radar of investigators and had no criminal history in Wisconsin, authorities said at a Friday press conference. He is currently in the Baron County Jail and police are not looking for additional suspects.
At the press conference, Baron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald alleged the suspect planned the crime and that “Jayme was the only target,” and that Patterson allegedly went to the home for the purpose of kidnapping Jayme and had no prior contact with the parents.
Patterson has not appeared in court to enter a plea. It was unclear if he had a lawyer who could comment on his behalf.
• with reporting by WENDY GROSSMAN KANTOR