By Tara Law
May 25, 2019

Jayme Closs submitted a powerful statement to the court for the sentencing Friday of the man who admitted to killing her parents and holding her captive for 88 days.

Closs, 13, was not present for the hearing for 21-year-old Jake Patterson, but her family’s attorney read the statement to the court.

In it, she recalled the day in October that Patterson kidnapped her and murdered her parents, James and Denise Closs, at their Barron, Wisconsin home. Patterson then brought Closs to his cabin near the town of Gordon, which is about 60 miles from her house. She said she is still living with the emotional scars of her ordeal.

“But there’s some things that Jake Patterson can never take from me,” the statement said. “He can’t take my freedom. He thought that he could own me but he was wrong. I was smarter. I watched his routine and I took back my freedom. I will always have my freedom and he will not.”

Closs managed to escape the cabin while Patterson was away on Jan. 10. She reached out to a woman who was out walking her dog. Patterson was arrested soon afterward.

Patterson pleaded guilty in March and was sentenced Friday to life in prison on two counts of intentional homicide and one count of kidnapping.

Read Closs’ full statement below.

Write to Tara Law at tara.law@time.com.

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