true crime

Jayme Closs's parents were found dead in their home. She hasn't been seen since.

On October 15, 2018, police received a call from a home in Barron, Wisconsin, at around 1:00am in the morning.

While the operator did not speak to anyone, they heard yelling and what sounded like a struggle in the background.

The police dispatcher called the number back and the call went straight to the voicemail of Denise Closs, 46.

When the Sheriff’s deputies arrived on scene, just four minutes after the call, they found the bodies of Denise and her husband James, who was 56 years old.

According to the Washington Post, both victims had gunshot wounds.

Their 13-year-old daughter, Jayme, was nowhere to be seen.

The family dog was still in the house and was unharmed. Based on the 911 call and evidence from the scene, police believe Jayme was home at the time of the shooting. They think the teenager was taken from the home moments after the attack.

At around 3:30pm that day, police issued a nationwide Amber Alert for Jayme. In the alert, she was described as 5-feet tall, 100 lbs (45 kilograms), with strawberry-blonde hair and green eyes.

Two days later, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald, told reporters Jayme is “missing and endangered”.

“I haven’t seen anything like this in rural western Wisconsin. We just don’t see this,” he said. “We want to bring Jayme home.”

“Every second counts in this case,” he added.

Fitzgerald later told Today that Jayme is not considered to be a suspect in the case. He “100 per cent” believes the teenager is alive.


On October 27, a funeral was held for Jayme’s parents.

While most of the community was attending the service, a man named Kyle Jaenke-Annis broke into the Closs home.

Police quickly arrived on scene and ordered the 32-year-old to come out of the house. According to NBC News, he had stuffed two tank tops, a girl’s dress and two pairs of girl’s underwear into his coat pocket.

Jaenke-Annis told police he took the items because he was “curious about what size Jayme was”.

The Wisconsin man said he did not know the Closs family, despite working at the same Jennie-O Turkey Store as Denise and James.

He has been cleared of any involvement in the disappearance of Jayme.

Last weekend, Fitzgerald raised the reward for information on the case to $50,000. He said the police department has already received more than 2000 tips.

“There is a tip out there that will break this case, keep them coming in. Thank you again for the community support behind the law enforcement effort on this case,” he said.

Ed Downing Sr, who is a relative of the Closs family, told Today he hopes the police can bring Jayme home safely.

“She was just a simple little small-town girl with a lot of big dreams, I think. You know?” he said.

“I sure hope she lives to see them.”

00:00 / ???