'The Million-Dollar Question Is Why': Wisc. Sheriff, School Official on Jayme Closs Kidnapping
Barron County, Wisconsin, Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said Saturday on that he had been waiting for "relief" during all 88 days of 13-year-old Jayme Closs' disappearance.
Closs vanished Oct. 15 after her parents were gunned down inside their home in Barron County, located about 80 miles northeast of Minneapolis.
A 21-year-old man, identified as Jake Thomas Patterson, was arrested shortly after Closs was found Thursday. He is being held on charges of murder for the killings of Closs' parents and kidnapping.
"I was elected to keep people safe and not having that unknown out there," Fitzgerald said on Fox & Friends. "It was a lot of sleepless nights."
Barron Area School District administrator Diane Tremblay added that it was important for her students to be together during Closs' disappearance to share hope of her safe return.
"Lo and behold, she's home," Tremblay said. "She's home."
Fitzgerald said Friday that authorities do not know how Patterson became aware of Closs, as he reportedly never had contact with her family.
The teen was able to escape from a cabin before flagging down a pedestrian walking her dog in the town of Gordon.
"The million-dollar question is why," Fitzgerald said Saturday. "[Patterson] had no connection with the Closs family. ... We don't believe he … talked with them, had any digital footprint with them."
Tremblay said she and her administration's hope is that Closs can have a "beautiful childhood."
"We're gonna be together and we're gonna get her through it," she said.
Watch the interview above.