The neighbors who helped a missing Wisconsin girl after she approached a home for help have detailed the chaos of the moment, explaining how they armed themselves in case her alleged captor showed up.
Jayme Closs, 13, had been missing for nearly three months after someone broke into her family's home, fatally shot her parents, James and Denise Closs, and kidnapped her. Her ordeal ended Thursday when she managed to escape the cabin - located about an hour from where she'd been taken -and approach a woman walking her dogs, who then took her to another neighbor's home asking for help.
Peter Kasinskas told the Twin Cities Pioneer Press that he was at home with his wife and two children when their dog “started going crazy.”
“And then the neighbor lady was pounding on our door in the kitchen,” he recalled. “She opened the door, her dog ran in, and then she helped this girl into the kitchen. She said: ‘It’s Jayme Closs! Call 911.’”
Kasinskas lives about a quarter of a mile from a rural Douglas County cabin where police believe Jake Patterson, 21, was holding Closs captive.
“When our neighbor Jeanne came in with Jayme, she said: ‘Get a gun. We don’t know if he’s after us,’” Peter’s wife Kristin Kasinskas told Fox News. “So we were armed and ready in case this person showed up.”
While her husband grabbed a gun, Kristin Kasinskas called 911.
The teen was able to give them ‘the person’s name and the color of the car that he drove, so when we called the police they could know who they were looking for,” according to the Twin Cities Pioneer Press.
Kristin, a middle-school teacher, said she knew Patterson from when he was a student. She described him as shy and bright when he was a pre-teen, but altogether unremarkable, according to Fox News. Kristin was also unaware that Patterson was her neighbor until that moment.
She and the couple’s children hid downstairs while Peter stood guard at a door, according to Fox News. Patterson never showed up, but he was arrested not far from their home. He is currently being held on two counts of first-degree intentional homicide for the murder of Closs's parents and one count of kidnapping.
Peter said that Closs appeared to be “in shock.”
“She was pretty quiet,” he recalled, adding that she declined offers of food and water. “She didn’t say a lot.”
Peter noted that the whole situation felt surreal.
“Honestly, there was so much adrenaline. It was almost like a fog,” he told the Twin Cities Pioneer Press. “When you see a ghost. It’s hard to wrap your mind around that.”
[Photo: FBI, Barron County Sheriff’s Department]
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