The man who kidnapped Wisconsin teen Jayme Closs and killed her parents got into a fight in a New Mexico prison with an inmate that started over the case.
Jake Patterson, 22, was sentenced to life back in May for shooting James and Denise Closs in their home outside Barron, Wisconsin in October 2018 and kidnapping their daughter Jayme, whom he held captive at a cabin in rural Gordon, Wisconsin for 88 days. The teen, then only 13, escaped in January 2019 and found help.
Patterson was transferred from the Dodge Correctional Facility in Waupun, Wisconsin, to an undisclosed prison in New Mexico over the summer due to “security concerns based on the publicity this case has received,” according to an inmate classification report obtained by the Green Bay Press-Gazette. Patterson was disciplined at Dodge Correctional Institution in Waupun on June 17, about a month before he was taken to New Mexico, for threatening to assault another inmate, the Press-Gazette reported. Prison staff also claimed he yelled at two other inmates, "Say that one more time motherf----- and I will kick your ass," according to the Press-Gazette.
Records that the Press-Gazette obtained from the New Mexico Corrections Department show two inmates at an unnamed prison in that state approached Patterson on Aug. 28 and told him to leave the area because of his case “involving a 14-year-old girl.”
Patterson said he would talk to whoever wanted him gone, but one of the inmates told Patterson not to “test him.” Video surveillance shows the other inmate got angry and took an “aggressive approach” toward Patterson, who allegedly punched one of them. They exchanged blows and wrestled until a prison staffer fired a bean bag round that hit a railing. An investigation ensued but the findings are unclear, the Press-Gazette reported.
The incidents raise questions about whether the details of Patterson’s crimes can go unnoticed at any prison. Wisconsin Department of Corrections officials didn’t immediately respond to an email asking if the agency expected his past would go undiscovered.
Patterson lied to officials at a reception facility for the New Mexico prison system in Las Lunas about his case, saying he met a 17-year-old girl online, developed a relationship with her and helped her run away from home, according to the Press-Gazette.
In actuality, Patterson decided to kidnap the 13-year-old Jayme after he spotted her getting onto a school bus near her home, he previously told investigators. After two aborted attempts, Patterson arrived at the Closs home last October with a shotgun, killing James Closs at the front door after the father came down to see why a stranger was standing outside their home.
Jayme and her mother hid in the bathtub with the door closed as they heard her father getting shot to death, according to a criminal complaint obtained by Oxygen.com. Then, Patterson had Denise Closs help him tie up Jayme before he shot her dead too, afterward taking the teen out to his car and putting her in the trunk.
During her captivity at Patterson's cabin in rural Wisconsin, he would force her to hide under his bed if he had friends or relatives over and he "made it clear that nobody was to know she was there or bad things would happen to her." However, Patterson characterized the situation differently, telling reporters that he loved her and that they the two enjoyed watching TV, playing board games, cooking and talking.
Jayme, now 14, said this month –– which marks the one-year anniversary of her parents' deaths –– that she feels stronger following the aftermath of the horrific events she endured.
“I really want to thank everyone for all the kindness and concern that all over the country have shown me,” she wrote in a statement that was read aloud by her parent guardian during an October press conference. “I am very happy at home and getting back to the activities I enjoy. I love being out with all my friends and I feel stronger every day."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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