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Missing Wisconsin Teen Jayme Closs Found Alive After Almost 3 Months

By Mimi Nguyen-ly

A Wisconsin teen, Jayme Closs, who had been missing since October 2018 has been located at Douglas County late Thursday, Jan. 10, according to the Barron County Sheriff’s Department.

The department shared on Facebook that a suspect was taken into custody after the 13-year-old was found alive in Douglas County,  about 70 miles north of Barron County.

“We do not [have] any other details at this time as this is a very fluid and active investigation. We will not be answering any questions or taking calls on this tonight,” the department wrote in a Facebook post.

Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said Jayme was expected to be reunited with her family Thursday night.

The department plans to hold a press briefing at 10 a.m. on Jan. 11 at the Sheriff’s Department in Barron.

Jayme Closs has been locatedOn Thursday evening the Barron County Sheriff’s Department was notified by the Douglas CO…

Barron County Sheriff's Department 发布于 2019年1月10日周四

“We are receiving support from the FBI and WI DCI agents as this investigation continues,” they wrote.

Jayme’s grandfather, Robert Naiberg, told the Minneapolis Star Tribune that Jayme was being treated at a hospital.

Sue Allard, Jayme’s aunt, told the Star Tribune that she could barely express her joy after learning the news Thursday night.

“Praise the Lord,” Allard said between sobs. “It’s the news we’ve been waiting on for three months. I can’t wait to get my arms around her. I just can’t wait.”

Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald thanked Closs’s family for their support throughout the investigation.

“[We] want to especially thank the family for their support and patience while this case was ongoing. We promised to bring Jayme home and tonight we get to fulfill that promise,” Fitzgerald wrote. “From the bottom of my heart thank you!”

“This case has been very trying on the family so please respect their privacy and we reunite them later tonight.”

Closs was missing since Oct. 15, 2018 when police found both her parents dead at their home in Barron, Wisconsin.

Police rushed over after receiving a 911 call around 1 a.m. on the day and found James Closs, 56, and Denise Closs, 46, dead. Police subsequently issued an amber alert for Jayme.

Jayme’s parents worked at the Jennie-O plant in the area.

Officials said they found gun casings strewn around the Closs home. Jayme is not a suspect in her parent’s deaths.

Detectives pursued thousands of tips, watched dozens of surveillance videos and conducted numerous searches in the effort to find Jayme. Some tips led officials to recruit 2,000 volunteers for a massive ground search on Oct. 23 but it yielded no clues.

Barron Mayor Ron Fladten said Thursday night he hadn’t heard any details about Jayme’s discovery yet but was overjoyed at learning she is alive.

“There was a lot of discouragement because this took quite a while to play out,” Fladten said. “A lot of people have been praying daily, as I have. It’s just a great result we got tonight. It’s unbelievable. It’s like taking a big black cloud in the sky and getting rid of it and the sun comes out again.”

He acknowledged that Jayme may not be the same person she was before she disappeared.

“I hope that she’s in good shape,” the mayor said. “She’s no doubt been through just a terrible ordeal. I think everybody wishes her a good recovery and a happy life going into the future.”

Puzzling Details

In early December 2018, Fitzgerald spoke exclusively to DailyMailTV about the investigation.

He told reporters that the items at the crime scene were strangely undisturbed and nothing seemed out of place despite an attack that was clearly violent.

“The house wasn’t disturbed at all from what we were able to tell,” Fitzgerald told the station. “That’s part of the confusing part of this case.”

Fitzgerald said the shooter was inside the house for only four minutes.

“It doesn’t appear that anything was taken, it doesn’t appear that Jayme packed up any clothing,” he added.

He said Jayme’s parents sustained wounds causing them to die “instantly.”

Investigators were also troubled by the utter lack of forensic evidence left by the killer.

“That’s the frustrating part of it,” Fitzgerald told DailyMailTV. “We’ve had four different lab teams look at the scene before we released it. We were very strategic. When we discovered it was a major crime we sealed it off immediately.

“But if I’m in your house for minutes and I only step five feet inside your home I’m probably not going to leave a big footprint.”

The sheriff said the only thing the shooter left behind was bullet casings.

The caliber of the rounds fired was something Fitzgerald would not reveal, saying that this information was being withheld as a matter of investigative strategy.

“Only the killer is going to know that and that’s information we have to hold close to the case so that when we catch this person we can convict them,” he said.

“We are looking for that gun,” he added. “We are looking for a firearm.”

Epoch Times’ Tom Ozimek and Zachary Stieber, and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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