The man who kidnapped Jayme Closs and killed her parents got into a fight with a fellow inmate at a New Mexico prison who asked about his crimes, raising questions about whether any prison can shield him from the notoriety brought by the case.
Jake Patterson, 22, was sentenced to life in May for killing James and Denise Closs in their home outside Barron, Wis. and kidnapping 13-year-old Jayme. Authorities said Patterson held the teen in his cabin for 88 days, forcing her to sleep under his bed before she escaped.
In July, he was transferred to New Mexico from Wisconsin without an explanation from prison officials. The previous month, he had been disciplined at the Dodge Correctional Institution in Waupun for threatening to assault another inmate.
Jake Patterson appears in Barron County Circuit Court in Barron, Wis. this past February. (T’xer Zhon Kha/The Post-Crescent via AP, Pool, File)
Patterson reportedly said: "Say that one more time motherf—– and I will kick your ass."
The Green Bay Press-Gazette reported that records provided by the New Mexico Corrections Department said Patterson was approached by two inmates in the prison gym on Aug. 28.
They reportedly told Patterson to leave the pod because he couldn't "stay in line" because of the case. One of the inmates "questioned his case involving a 14 year old girl."
Video surveillance appeared to show an inmate aggressively approach Patterson, who punched the man. Blows were exchanged and the two wrestled before a staffer fired a bean bag round that hit a railing.
No one was seriously injured.
Corrections officials in both states have not revealed in which prison Patterson is being housed. He initially went to the Central New Mexico Correctional Facility in Los Lunas, a reception center for the state's prison system.
While there, he falsely claimed he met a 17-year-old girl online and helped her run away from home.
The fight raises questions about whether moving Patterson out-of-state makes him safer. The Press-Gazette reported the team who transferred him had to drive straight from Wisconson to New Mexico because no state wanted to assume responsibility for him, even for long enough to allow the team to rest.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.