BARRON, Wis. (AP) — The father of a Wisconsin man accused of kidnapping a 13-year-old girl and killing her parents has expressed sympathy for the girl and her family.
Patrick Patterson visited the Barron County Justice Center on Tuesday saying he wanted to pass a note to Jayme Closs’ family, CNN reported. On the verge of tears, Patrick Patterson declined an interview but said: “All I care about right now is Jayme’s family.”
His son, 21-year-old Jake Patterson, is charged with targeting Jayme in October, just days after he first spotted her getting on a school bus near her home.
Investigators said he held the girl captive for three months until she escaped last week .
Jayme’s grandfather, Robert Naiberg, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that he appreciates the father’s gesture.
“I don’t blame him,” Naiberg said. “You can’t blame the parents. A guy becomes 21 years old, and sometimes it’s not how he was raised or anything.”
Naiberg said Jayme Closs continues to recover while staying with her aunt in Barron, a town in northwest Wisconsin. Naiberg said Jayme will permanently live with Smith, who is her mother’s sister.
“She doesn’t want to talk to anybody,” Naiberg said. “Jennifer is bringing her out of her shell slowly.”
Naiberg said Jayme wants to return to school but it isn’t clear when that might happen.