Girl found alive after parents murder

Photograph of Jayme ClossImage copyright
Barron County Sheriff’s Department

Image caption

Jayme Closs, 13, has been described as a “sweet girl” by school officials

A 13-year-old girl from Wisconsin who went missing in October after her parents were murdered has been found alive, officials say.

Jayme Closs, whose parents, aged 56 and 46, were discovered shot dead in their family home last year, was located on Thursday evening, police said.

They said a suspect believed to be linked to the case was now in custody.

Local media said Jayme had escaped from a rural home near Gordon, Wisconsin, and was found bedraggled by residents.

“We promised to bring Jayme home and tonight we get to fulfil that promise,” a police statement said.

Police gave no other details but are due to hold a press briefing later on Friday.

How was Jayme found?

Nothing official has been said but some details have emerged on local media.

KARE-TV said Jayme was found in a small development with few residents about six miles (10km) east of Gordon.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune quoted a teacher at a local school as saying a neighbour walking her dog had knocked on her door after having found Jayme.

The teacher said Jayme was skinny, dirty and wearing shoes too large for her feet.

“This is Jayme Closs! Call 911!” the neighbour told the teacher, according to the Star Tribune.

Jayme stayed at the teacher’s home for about 20 minutes and declined food and water, Associated Press reports.

The Star Tribune quoted a local sheriff as saying the suspect was arrested minutes later and that Jayme was taken to hospital.

What have police said about the murders?

On Monday 15 October 2018, emergency services received a call at the family address in Barron from a mobile phone and heard a disturbance in the background, but no-one spoke to them directly.

When police arrived four minutes later, no gun or suspects were found at the scene and there was no sign of Jayme.

The following Wednesday, the deaths of James and Denise Closs were officially ruled as homicide by a medical examiner.

At a news conference, police said they had received about 400 tips from the public since the 13-year-old disappeared and an Amber Alert was issued for her.

An alert stated that she was taken from her home early on Monday morning by “unknown individual(s), likely with a gun”.

Jayme and her mother attended a family birthday party together on Sunday afternoon while Mr Closs was at work, Jayme’s grandfather told the Associated Press.

Robert Naiberg said that nothing seemed amiss at the gathering, and that Jayme was “quiet as always”.

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