The man convicted of kidnapping Jayme Closs has been sentenced to two consecutive life sentences without chance for release for the murder of James and Denise Closs on May 24. Patterson also received a 40-year sentence for Jayme’s kidnapping in October 2018.
Six members of Jayme’s family read victim impact statements aloud for Patterson and others to hear all of which were emotional and direct. Several family members read their tearful messages and asked that maximum sentences be given to Patterson for each charge. After reading their own letters, Attorney Chris Gramstrup read Jayme’s letter for the court room.
“Last October, Jake Patterson took a lot of things that I love away from me. It makes me the most sad that he took away my mom and my dad,” the letter read, “but there are some things that Jake Patterson can never take from me. He can never take my freedom…I will always have my freedom and he will not. Jake Patterson can never take away my courage…He can never take away my spirit…He can’t ever change me or take away who I am…I will go on to do great things in my life, and he will not.”
After all statements had concluded, the State’s argument recommended the maximum sentences for the death of James and Denise Closs as well as Jayme’s kidnapping. A detailed record of the events leading up to Patterson’s arrest to justify the State recommendation was given. During the vivid description, including the recorded 911 call to Barron County Police, Patterson visibly hung and shook his head.
Patterson’s attorneys, Richard Jones and Charles Glynn then followed the State’s recommendations with their own, that Patterson be given the chance for parole. While this seems apparently unjust, Glynn made it known that this would not allow Patterson the opportunity to leave prison in his lifetime.
“The way to recognize Jake taking responsibility for his actions and for avoiding all of those traumatic events is to set a far off future parole eligibility date or extended supervision date, knowing that it will not change the fact that he will not get out.” Glynn said, “This sentence can be structured in a fashion that makes sure that he does stay in prison for the rest of his life. But it’s the opportunity for consideration for parole that changes how someone is treated programmatically, and to be given help and to be a productive member in prison.”
In a tearful final statement, Patterson said, “I would do absolutely anything to take back what I did. I would die. I would do absolutely anything to bring them back. I don’t care about me. I’m just so sorry.” Before the final verdict, Barron County Judge James C. Babler read the deeply disturbing notes written by Patterson in order to justify his duty to protect the public in his sentencing.
“I’ve been a lawyer for almost 40 years and a judge for the last 16 years, almost entirely in this county, and these crimes rank as the most heinous and dangerous that I have seen either here, or anywhere else in the state of Wisconsin, and perhaps the United States,” he said, “there is no doubt in my mind that you are one of the most dangerous men to walk on this planet…You are the embodiment of evil, and the public can only be safe if you are incarcerated until you die”