Jayme Closs Located Alive in Douglas County, Suspect Arrested

Updated: January 11, 2019 06:31 AM

Missing teenager Jayme Closs has been located alive in Douglas County and a suspect is in custody.

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The Douglas County Sheriff's Office said Closs was located in The Town of Gordon, which is in the far southern part of the county, at 4:43 p.m. and a suspect was arrested at 4:54 p.m., also in Gordon.  

The Associate Press is reporting Denny Kline, board chairman in the Town of Gordon, says he first learned Jayme was found while listening to a police scanner, which he has for work. He says he heard Jayme was walking down the road and someone stopped near her.

Officials did not confirm any other information about how the 13-year-old, who has been missing for nearly three months, was found.

A source told KSTP-TV's Beth McDonough that a teenage girl is said to have walked up to a woman walking her dog Thursday afternoon, screaming that a man had murdered her parents. KSTP reported that Closs was taken to a Duluth hospital.

She was found in a rural neighborhood about 6 miles east of Gordon. The street, Eau Claire Acres, was still blocked off late Thursday night. A Wisconsin Department of Justice Crime Scene Division truck arrived shortly before 11 p.m. 

Jayme's aunt, Jennifer Smith, told ABC News that Jayme is "doing good" and talking.  Smith said there are a lot of happy tears in her house.

"We are just happy everyone kept praying and didn't give up hope like we didn't," Smith said.

She said the family is waiting to hear about the next steps.

Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said it is a "fluid and active investigation" and he plans to release more information at a press conference Friday morning in Barron. WDIO-TV plans to carry the news conference live at about 10 a.m.

"We want to thank the Douglas Co. Sheriff’s Department and agencies assisting them tonight. We also want to thank all the Law Enforcement agencies across the state and country that have assisted us in this case. We also could not have endured this case without the support of the public and I want to thank them for all the support and help," Fitzgerald wrote.

"Finally 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. From the bottom of my heart THANK YOU."

Detectives have pursued thousands of tips, watched dozens of surveillance videos and spent countless hours searching for Closs since her Oct. 15 disappearance. The FBI and Wisconsin Division of Criminal Investigation are assisting in the investigation.

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