Gordon community reacts after Jayme Closs' escape

By  | 

DOUGLAS COUNTY, Wis. (WEAU) -- From one small community to another, the Jayme Closs case has hit home for the City of Barron and the impact is also being felt in Douglas County where Jayme escaped from the man charged with kidnapping her and killing her parents.

Days after Jayme was safely reunited with her family, the Gordon community where investigators say Jayme was held against her will for 88 days is reacting.

Residents in the Gordon area say they were shocked to find out 13 year-old Jayme was alive and had been held within their community for the last three months. "Her picture was plastered everywhere locally," said one community member.

“I was kind of shocked but then I had no clue that she'd probably been here that whole time,” said Etta Youngquist, who says she was born and raised in Gordon.

Jake Patterson, 21, is charged with homicide, kidnapping, and armed burglary. Court documents detail how Jayme Closs was kidnapped by Patterson on the early morning of October 15th after he shot her parents, James and Denise Closs with a 12 gauge shotgun.

The criminal complaint also says Jayme was forced to hide under Patterson's bed for hours at a time without bathroom breaks. “It was kind of a shock to think in Gordon, little Gordon that this would go on,” said one resident.

“I had my relatives calling me from all over the country asking me what happened in Gordon, Wisconsin,” said Dorinda Jarvis, Gordon Resident.

Other community members say Patterson was not well known and kept to himself. "My grandson was a couple years behind him in school so right away he had knowledge of him but no I'd never even heard the name before," said one resident.

Others say it’s a reminder that not everyone knows what their neighbors could be capable of. Still area residents say they’re focus on sending Jayme well wishes.
“Our prayers are totally for Jayme's recovery and strength and and support that she will be able to live

Charges against Patterson have been filed in Barron County but officials say additional charges could later surface for crimes committed in Douglas County. Patterson is due back in Barron County court on February 6th.