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Missing Boy: Jacob Wetterling - MN - 10/22/1989


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#1 Lori Davis

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Posted 30 November 2008 - 10:43 AM

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Age-progressed to 29 years

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Jacob Erwin Wetterling

DOB:  Feb 17, 1978
Missing:  Oct 22, 1989
Age at time of disappearance: 11
Sex:  Male
Race:  White
Hair:  Brown
Eyes:  Blue
Height:  5'0" (152 cm)
Weight:  75 lbs (34 kg)
Missing From:
Saint Joesph,Minnesota
United States
 
Jacob's photo is shown age-progressed to 29 years. He was last seen at approximately 9:00 p.m. He was with his brother and another friend when they were threatened at gunpoint by an unknown individual. Jacob has a mole on his left cheek, a mole on his neck and a scar on his knee.

Contact Information:
Stearns County Sheriff's Office (Minnesota) 
1-320-259-3700

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#2 Lori Davis

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Posted 30 November 2008 - 10:46 AM

http://www.amw.com/m...ef.cfm?id=24521

AMW profile for Jacob Wetterling

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#3 Lori Davis

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Posted 17 December 2008 - 04:23 PM

http://www.wdio.com/...shtml?cat=10335

Adam Walsh Case A Reminder of Minnesota Missing Children
Created on: 12/17/2008 05:29:52 PM
By: Laura Kennedy
 
After 27 years, Adam Walsh's murderer has been named. His father, John Walsh, says he's relieved the waiting is finally over.

"It's about justice," said Walsh. "It's not about revenge or vigilantism. It's not about closure. We'll always--Reve always says we'll have that hole in our heart for the rest of our lives. But it's about justice and yesterday ended that chapter in our lives."

But two local families are still searching for justice and closure.

Perhaps the most famous Minnesota child abduction case is that of 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling. On October 22, 1989, Jacob was riding bikes with his brother and a friend near his home in St. Joseph when a masked gunman approached them. The man told Jacob's brother and friend to run and not look back or he would shoot them. The man then grabbed Jacob by the elbow and walked toward a wooded area. Jacob has not been seen or heard from since.

Authorities have gotten multiple tips and possible leads in the Wetterling case, most recently in 2004 when a man resembling Jacob was found in Warroad. A fingerprint sample proved the man was not Jacob. Almost 20 years later, the case is still unsolved.

On June 14, 2003, 5-year-old Leanna Warner, also known as "Beaner," went missing near her home in Chisholm. She was last seen around 5 p.m. on her way to a friend's house. When her parents hadn't heard from her 45 minutes later, they launched a frantic neighborhood search. But there was no sign of Leanna.

However, police say they aren't giving up. The investigation is open and police are still looking for leads in Leanna's disappearance.

Even though they now have their answer, the Walshes continue to mourn the loss of their son. But they take comfort in knowing Adam's death helped revolutionize the way authorities handle missing children cases.


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#4 Lori Davis

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 07:54 PM

http://www.twincitie...rce=most_viewed

Search of Milwaukee man's home reveals disturbing links to Wetterling abduction
By Tad Vezner
Updated: 01/06/2009 08:51:32 PM CST

This is a 1989 family photo of Jacob Wetterling, who was abducted at gunpoint near his home in St. Joseph, Minn., on Oct. 22, 1989. Jacob, who was 11 years old at the time, has not been found. (AP)A discovery in the Milwaukee home of a man who visited Patty Wetterling soon after her 11-year-old son, Jacob, was abducted in 1989, has brought a disturbing chapter to the decades-old search.

Last month, police found Vernon Seitz, 62, of Milwaukee, dead in his home. He appeared to have died of natural causes.

Police went to the home after Seitz's psychiatrist told them he had admitted to killing two children in 1958, and wanted to confess. Seitz, who owned "Vern's Barber Shop" in St. Francis, a Milwaukee suburb, would have been 12 years old at the time.

In the home, police found child pornography paintings of young boys being tortured, books on cannibalism, and fliers and news articles about missing children from nearby communities.

They also found several items pertaining to Jacob Wetterling, including "numerous letters, maps, news stories," a photo of Wetterling and a video of him prior to his abduction.

Looking around further, the investigator found newly poured cement in the basement, along with bondage devices hanging from the rafters. Tufts of hair were also found in the basement; outside the investigator found piles of dirt.

In Oct. 22, 1989, 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling was abducted by a masked gunman while playing with his brother and a friend near his home in St. Joseph.

Police departments across the country received hundreds of calls claiming sightings of Jacob, but none were ever verified.

Patty Wetterling said Tuesday that Seitz had come to visit her twice soon after the abduction claiming to be a psychic and wanting to help. He had even given her a painting of Jacob.

"He seemed to care, and he shared that he had his own personal reason to care," she said, noting that Seitz had had an abusive incident happen to him in the past.

She said Seitz seemed troubled — but did not want to jump to conclusions, and noted that many people like Seitz had come to visit her after the abduction received national attention.

"It's not uncommon for us to hear about leads like this. They're awful, but they're not uncommon. I refuse to think about more of this type of scenario than I have to right now... This is not the ending I want, this isn't what I would like to see for any family," she said.

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#5 Lori Davis

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 08:01 PM

http://www.myfoxtwin...TY&pageId=3.2.1

Possible Wetterling Connection to Milwaukee Man's Deathbed Claim 
Cannibalism books, kids' shoes, porn found in dead man's home 

Last Edited: Tuesday, 06 Jan 2009, 8:52 PM CST 
Created: Tuesday, 06 Jan 2009, 8:45 PM CST 

MILWAUKEE (FOX 9) -- A Milwaukee barber has made a deathbed claim that he killed two boys, and investigators have found several items relating to Jacob Wetterling's disappearance in his home. But the man died three weeks ago, before investigators could talk to him.

The evidence found in 62-year-old Vernon Seitz's home is disturbing. Child porn, children's shoes, and pictures of missing kids -- including Jacob Wetterling. In 1989, 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling was abducted in St. Joseph and has never been found.

At this point, the evidence is circumstantial, but Milwaukee Police are investigating.

Seitz claims to have been involved in the murder of children -- but has since died. The suburban Milwaukee barber died of natural causes last month, just days after he gave his psychiatrist permission to tell police he was forced to murder two boys in 1958. It's a story his psychiatrist says may have been a figment of his imagination, as it's been told to her throughout the years with many variations.

"I'm extremely unhappy that I am quoted as saying to police that he confessed to crimes that he never confessed whatsoever," says Dr. Victoria Fetter, adding that Seitz never once mentioned Jacob Wetterling.

When Milwaukee Police searched Seitz's home, they found several pictures of Jacob Wetterling, "missing" posters, and a map of St. Joseph, Minnesota, where he was abducted.

There was also memorabilia of other missing children, a child's sneakers, human hair, books on cannibalism, and child pornography in the form of videos, photos, drawings, and paintings.

Hearing of the possible link, Jacob's mother Patty Wetterling said, "For me, I just take a deep breath, and let police investigators do their job." 

Patty Wetterling says she actually met Vernon Seitz years ago. He claimed to be a psychic who wanted to help her find Jacob. Back then, she says, "We listened to anyone who thought they could help find Jacob."

In Seitz's basement, police found newly-poured cement and elevated dirt piles.

But Milwaukee Police says they don't believe there's a connection to Jacob Wetterling, or any other missing child. Authorities won't say whether they intend to or already have excavated any part of the Seitz home, but they do say they are close to wrapping up the case.

His psychiatrist points out that Seitz claimed he was forced to kill a child in Racine, Wis. in 1958, when he was only 12. But no evidence was found to support that.

In 1998, Seitz spent time in St. Joseph, helping search for Jacob. He spend a week there, staying at the Super 8 Motel.

A St. Cloud woman, who has followed the case closely, says that Seitz told her he was abducted as a child at the Milwaukee Zoo. He said he was forced to have sex with his abductor and forced to shoot another boy. The informant even recorded Seitz talking about the episode.

"It comes in a dream state but not so much if I take my drugs. But I also have waking flashbacks. Makes me very miserable. The reason I sought psychiatric help was that it made me suicidal," said Seitz on the recording.

Dr. Fetter says Seitz shared that incident in his childhood with her. Seitz claimed he had repressed memories of his own abduction, but Jacob's highly-publicized kidnapping brought his own memories back. At the time, that's how he explained his seeming obsession with the search for Jacob to people.

For years, a Jacob Wetterling "Missing" poster hung in Vernon Seitz's barber shop. A long-time customer told FOX 9, "Some people fish, some hunt and I guess, he just liked to look for missing kids."

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#6 Jenn

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Posted 07 January 2009 - 06:55 AM

http://www.foxnews.c...,477384,00.html

Mystery Remains After Wisconsin Man's Deathbed 'Confession'

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

MILWAUKEE —  Milwaukee police have investigated a suburban barber's reported deathbed statement that he was a child killer but found no connection with any missing child case, including that of a Minnesota boy abducted two decades ago, a police spokeswoman said Tuesday night.

Search warrant documents obtained by WTMJ-TV showed the 62-year-old man told his psychiatrist of the killing and the psychiatrist notified police, but the man died from natural causes Dec. 15 before investigators could question him.

According to the station, searches of the man's residence since the death found newly poured cement in the basement, elevated dirt piles in the yard, bondage devices in the basement, child pornography on his bed and flyers and news articles about missing small children from nearby states.

Some materials involved the case of Jacob Wetterling, an 11-year-old boy who was abducted from St. Joseph, Minn., on Oct. 22, 1989, and has never been found.

No human remains were found in the basement or yard, the station said, and relatives said the man, a native of nearby Racine, had a great concern for child abduction victims, having been abducted as a child himself.

Police spokeswoman Anne E. Schwartz acknowledged that there were unusual things found in the search, but she told The Associated Press that the investigation didn't come up with anything to show a connection with missing children.

"To suggest that this guy had anything to do with these missing children cases is absolutely inaccurate," she said.

Jacob's mother, Patty Wetterling, told KARE-TV in the Twin Cities that she had met the man a long time ago when he came to Minnesota "with psychic information," indicating he wanted to help find the boy.
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#7 Jenn

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Posted 07 January 2009 - 06:56 AM

http://topnews.us/co...erplexes-police

Wisconsin barber’s deathbed ‘confession’ perplexes police

Submitted by Medha Sood on Wed, 01/07/2009 - 09:44

The deathbed statement of a Wisconsin barber has become a sort of mystery for the Milwaukee police! Though the 62-year-old man, Vernon Seitz, said that he was a child killer, the police believe the man actually did not kill any children, as no connection could be established with any missing child case.

Seitz, who was the owner of Vern's Barber Shop in St. Francis, died December 18 in his Bay View home. Before dying a natural death, he told his psychiatrist of his 'child killings'; the psychiatrist later informed the police.

The disturbing discovery that the police made on entering the home of the dead man - having found child pornography, flyers and news articles about missing children and cannibalistic books - appear more like leavings of a disturbed individual.

The investigators, having looked through Seitz's home, said the dead man's collection included a lot of information about Jacob Wetterling - a Minnesota boy, who went missing in 1989 and has never been found. However, no human remains were found from the house.

On being questioned the relatives of Seitz told the police that he had a great concern for child abduction victims, as he himself had been abducted when he was a child.

Even though Anne E. Schwartz, the Police spokeswoman, admitted that some 'unusual' things were found in Seitz's home, she told The Associated Press that the investigation did not reveal any correlation with missing children.

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#8 Jenn

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Posted 07 January 2009 - 06:58 AM

http://www.jsonline....n/37188529.html

Dead barber's home yields creepy stash

By Jesse Garza of the Journal Sentinel

Posted: Jan. 6, 2009

Police searching the home of a deceased St. Francis barber who claimed he was involved in murders of two boys 50 years ago found child pornography, newspaper clippings and fliers on missing children, bondage devices and paintings depicting child torture.

However, no physical evidence connecting the man to any murders was discovered during the search of the Bay View home, and Milwaukee police said they cannot prove Vernon Seitz was involved in any child homicides or missing children cases.

"We've exhausted all the leads in this case. This is not an active investigation," Milwaukee police spokeswoman Anne E. Schwartz said Tuesday.

"If we receive information from someone that gives us a concrete lead to follow, we certainly will, but at this point, there is no such information that has been shared with us."

Still, news of the search results traveled quickly to the Twin Cities, after several of the items in Seitz's Bay View home and St. Francis barbershop were linked to the name of a boy missing from there since 1989.

The search of Seitz's home in mid-December yielded a number of disturbing discoveries, including books on how to perform cannibalism, bondage devices, newly poured cement in the basement and elevated piles of dirt in the yard, according to a police affidavit used to obtain a search warrant.

According to the affidavit, Milwaukee police found Seitz, 62, dead of apparent natural causes in his home in the 900 block of E. Conway St. on Dec. 15. A detective had been sent to interview Seitz after being told by Milwaukee psychiatrist Victoria Fetter that he wanted to confess to his involvement in the boys' murders in 1958. (Fetter said Seitz told her the killings happened in 1959.)
Police findings

While investigating Seitz's death, police found the newspaper clippings and fliers, photographs of boys posing nude in a sexually suggestive manner and a painting of two small, nude boys being tortured by adults.

A handgun was recovered and the books on cannibalism also included a copy of one entitled, "Eat Thy Neighbor: A History of Cannibalism," according to a police inventory report.

Police jack-hammered the basement and also searched Seitz's business, Vern's Barber Shop, 4243 S. Packard Ave., where they found a poster of Jacob Wetterling, a Minnesota boy abducted in 1989.

Videotapes of Jacob were found at Seitz's residence.

The boy's mother, Patty Wetterling, told the St. Paul Pioneer Press that Seitz came to visit her twice soon after the abduction. He claimed to be a psychic wanting to help and had even given her a painting of Jacob.

"He seemed to care, and he shared that he had his own personal reason to care," she said, noting that Seitz had had an abusive incident happen to him in the past, which she declined to speak of further.

"That's really not uncommon for people who came forward to talk to us. We heard that a lot," Wetterling said.

Wetterling stressed she did not want to jump to conclusions and noted that many people like Seitz had come to visit her after the abduction received national attention.

Accounts differ

Fetter's account of Seitz's claims differed slightly from the account in the police affidavit.

In an interview, Fetter said she treated Seitz for 11 years.

During that time, he told her of an incident in 1959 in which he was abducted while at a zoo in Racine with his family. Seitz said he had been abducted, put into a vehicle and blindfolded before being sodomized and beaten.

He also told her that he shot and killed a 14-year-old boy because his abductors threatened to kill him if he did not carry out the shooting and that he saw his abductors shoot and kill another boy.

Seitz told Fetter that his abductors released him the same day, and he told her that the entire incident lasted seven or eight hours.

Fetter said she "tended to" believe Seitz's story, "largely because he never contradicted himself. These things do happen. I mean, they're not unheard of. . . . He was always very consistent in his story, which sort of gave it credence."

Fetter said doctor-patient confidentiality rules prevented her from contacting authorities about Seitz's claims that he had killed the 14-year-old boy in Racine.

But in November, Seitz asked Fetter to contact Racine police and set up a meeting with them so he could confess to the shooting that he said he was forced to commit.

After Seitz's death, Milwaukee police contacted Racine police, but Racine police did not find any evidence that the killings or abductions that Seitz had described had taken place, Schwartz said.

Milwaukee police also interviewed some of Seitz's relatives, who said they knew nothing about the abduction and killings that Seitz had described.

Seitz had a fascination with missing children and young boys, Fetter said.

"He told me that although he liked little boys, he knew that you can't touch little boys, so what he did was paint them nude," Fetter said. "He didn't tell me about kiddie porn or anything. . . . If my patient lusts for boys but knows that he would get in boiling hot water if he did anything, then he can paint the pictures. That won't hurt anybody."

Seitz also claimed to be a psychic and traveled throughout the Midwest offering his services to the families of missing children, Fetter said.

Seitz was friendly - almost too polite, Fetter said - but she also said he "was no angel."

Fetter said she was appalled by the items that were found in Seitz's house.
House boarded

At Seitz's home Tuesday, many windows were boarded up. A hand-printed sign in faded ink on the front door stated, "You have just been photographed by an infrared camera. Photos go to police, since recent robbery invasion. Call first before coming here."

A neighbor who refused to identify herself said the windows were being boarded up because Seitz had planned to move to Racine. Neighbors said he owned the house and had lived there for a long time.

"He was nice enough, that's all I'm going to say," the woman said.

Near Vern's Barber Shop in St. Francis, Lynne Bartholomew, owner of Lynne's Scizzory, a hair salon next door, said she knew Seitz for nine years.

"He would come in and ask for a cup of coffee and tell me about his life, which was pretty scary, actually," Bartholomew said.

She said Seitz told her he was abducted from the Racine zoo as a boy by men who molested him and forced him to shoot and kill another boy.

Bartholomew said Seitz also claimed to have shot and killed a man who robbed him in his home three years ago and that he had killed two men in Chicago some years ago.

Bartholomew said Seitz had a particular interest in boys that made her and some of her customers "uncomfortable."

She also said he had a strong interest in Jacob Wetterling and had a laminated poster of Jacob in his barbershop.

The poster was seized by police after Seitz's death, she said.

Bartholomew said Seitz told her that he had seen a psychiatrist regularly since his alleged abduction, which, he told her, "ruined my life," she said.

Asked whether she believed that Seitz had committed any crimes, she said: "I don't know. I'm real torn. I knew this nice person who was very weird."

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#9 Lori Davis

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Posted 04 June 2009 - 05:04 PM

http://www.jwrc.org/

Jacob Wetterling Resource Center

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#10 La Vina

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 07:59 PM

http://www.kare11.co...23220&catid=391


08/28/2009
By Karla Hult

Posted Image
Patty Wetterling

Kidnapped girl's reunion with family gives hope to Patty Wetterling

The California kidnapping case of a woman held captive for 18 years only to be reunited with her family this week -- is bringing hope to other families of missing children.

Investigators say they caught up with convicted sex offender, Phillip Garrido, and his wife, Nancy, this week, 18 years after they allegedly abducted Jaycee Dugard in 1991.

The couple allegedly kept Dugard captive in a complex of tents and sheds behind their home. Investigators say she shared that space with her two children, believed to have been fathered by Garrido. Jaycee had the first of her two daughters when she was only 14.

For one woman, the case goes beyond the horrifying first details. It gives her hope.

"I'm just thrilled. My heart sings when I hear these stories because she's now free to rebuild a life and go after her dreams," said Patty Wetterling.

On Oct. 22, 1989, it was Patty Wetterling's son, Jacob, who disappeared from his hometown of St. Joseph, Minnesota. The then 11-year-old became a symbol for the Wetterling family's efforts to help others find their missing children. The most significant result of that work: a law that requires a state sex-offender registry.

"The Jacob Wetterling Crimes Against Children Sex Offender Registration Act provided them with the fact that this man had a history," Patty Wetterling said with pride on Friday afternoon.

For Patty, the details of Jaycee's captivity only further support Patty's convictions -- that police, neighbors and especially family can't give up on finding missing children.

"We carry hope all the time. It's everyone who gets cynical and it just validates it doesn't really matter how long -- these kids can come home, but they don't usually come home on their own," Patty said.

Today, the now 29-year-old Jaycee is home, along with her two daughters, ages 15 and 11. It marks the end of one family's nightmare while giving other families reason to believe they too can live the dream of a reunion.

"It's a terrible situation every time a child is kidnapped. The best you can hope for is that you return them as quickly as possible. This one took a long time, but she is now free," Patty said.

Phillip and Nancy Garrido have pleaded "not guilty" to several charges, including kidnapping and rape. Also on Friday, authorities searched the Garrido home for evidence in the murders of several prostitutes




#11 Kelly

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Posted 10 October 2009 - 11:09 AM

On Tuesday October 13th, Oprah will interview the Law Enforcement Officers who rescued Jaycee Dugard. The show will also feature long-term missing children, such as Jacob Wetterling. 

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#12 Lori Davis

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 07:03 AM

http://www.sctimes.c.../110180045/1009

'Jacob's Hope' still alive in their hearts
Family has channeled grief into efforts to help find other missing kids


By David Unze •  October 18, 2009

ST. JOSEPH — There’s only one road connecting the rest of the world to the quiet cul-de-sac Jerry and Patty Wetterling call home.

In an area that has seen surrounding land gobbled up by development, 91st Avenue Southeast cuts through farm fields as it approaches the Wetterling residence.

It still looks a lot like it did 20 years ago, the night 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling was abducted at the spot where a neighbor’s driveway meets that road.

And every time the Wetterlings leave their home, whether for days at a time or to get a gallon of milk, they pass the spot where the second-oldest of their four children disappeared.

“We call it The Site,” Jerry said. “Sometimes we say we’re going to take a walk to The Site. It’s kind of an eerie feeling.”

“I say a prayer every time I go past it,” Patty said.

What happened at that spot forever changed what it meant to them to be a parent, a spouse, a Wetterling. And 20 years later, the couple still seeks answers and strives to return the world to what it was for Jacob before he was taken during a bike ride home from the convenience store.

“You have to find a way to work through it, and my way of coping was to keep that front and center,” Patty said. “Working for the world that Jacob knew.”

“Jacob’s Hope” became a slogan for the extensive efforts to find Jacob and his abductor. Patty Wetterling took to the national stage to fight for laws that created sex offender registries and tougher penalties for offenders. She has crisscrossed the country to speak to police officers, politicians and talk show audiences. She ran for office, and they started a foundation to help find missing children.

She and Jerry still live in the house on Kiwi Court that they called home the night Jacob was abducted. They have opinions about who might have taken Jacob, but they are careful about discussing suspects.

They don’t discount a theory that Stearns County Sheriff John Sanner forwarded in recent years that shifted the focus of the investigation to local suspects.

The Wetterlings’ hope for Jacob’s return is bolstered by reports of other long-lost children who are reunited with family members.

And while hope remains, anniversaries bring a mixture of emotions.

“There’s a certain anxiety and uneasiness about October coming,” Jerry said. “The leaves are turning and it’s that time of year and the feelings kind of come back from at the time that it happened.”

“You don’t need to look at a calendar, you feel it in the air,” Patty said, “when the leaves start to turn and the kids are back in school.”

It’s a season that Patty calls “the shaking of the tree,” when annual publicity about Jacob’s abduction generates more leads in the case. The Wetterlings hope the lead they need surfaces or a person comes forward with a tip — or a confession.

“We’re dealing with this on a daily basis, but the world, the community, tends to remember again at the anniversary time,” Jerry said.

Just the other day, Patty was leaving a restaurant and was stopped by a woman who wanted only to tell her that the Wetterling family was in her prayers. The woman was surprised that 20 years had passed since Jacob was taken, Patty said.

They chatted for a few minutes. Patty remembers leaving the parking lot in tears.

“Everything makes me cry this time of the year,” she said.

But it’s that type of support, from friends, family and strangers, that keeps the Wetterlings going, they said.

“I do feel we owe the world an incredible amount of gratitude for the prayers and the support and the holding us up when we couldn’t do it on our own,” Patty said. “We could never repay people for that.”

“That part of it is just amazing,” Jerry said. “The support system has always been there and that gets reinforced.”

The Wetterlings’ family support system continues to grow. Almost 20 years after Jacob was taken, the family added a Jake, a grandson born to their son Trevor and his wife, Trish.

Patty recently finished a book, called “Jacob’s Hope,” that is intended to tell her grandchildren about their uncle Jacob and the special place in their hearts that is his hope.

It’s that hope that motivates her still, the same hope that forced her to get out of bed in the days after her son’s abduction.

“I remember at the beginning just curling up in a ball and saying, ‘I’m never going to get out of this bed,’ ” she said. “And I knew that I couldn’t. But I had this very strong visual of Jacob curled up in a ball somewhere saying the same thing: ‘I can’t do this anymore, they’re never going to find me.’ And just having this desperateness.

“And I began talking to him. ‘Hold on Jake. We’ll find you. We won’t quit.’ And I thought, ‘if I’m expecting him to stay strong, you better get out of bed.’ ”

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#13 La Vina

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 12:12 PM

The Doe Network: Case File 132DMMN-Jacob Erwin Wetterling

The Charley Project: Jacob Erwin Wetterling



#14 La Vina

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Posted 19 October 2009 - 07:34 PM

http://www.northland...l/64861187.html

Jacob Wetterling rememberd twenty years later

Posted Image

Jacob Wetterling

Oct 19, 2009

Twenty years ago the abduction of then 11–year–old Jacob Wetterling
prompted one of the biggest search efforts in Minnesota. It also prompted some major changes in laws aimed at protecting children. Four months after Jacob's abduction the Jacob Wetterling Foundation was formed and eventually helped launch the Amber Alert
system in Minnesota.

Watch The Video

While the Duluth Police Department could not say how many missing
children cases they are currently working on they did say tools like
the Amber Alert have helped on many occasions.

There are also new laws like the recent Brandon's Law named after a
missing 19–year–old that requires law enforcement to take a missing
person report no matter a person's age.

Officials said all these changes are helping to find people. Whether
these laws could have brought Jacob Wetterling home twenty years ago, officials don't know. But one thing is for sure, the Wetterlings are
still hopeful they will see Jacob one day.

"What we decided to do was to acknowledge the hope and what gets you going everyday, it's kids. It's the world that we owe them, it's what
could be," Patty Wetterling, Jacob's mother, said at a remembrance
concert on Saturday.


#15 La Vina

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Posted 21 October 2009 - 02:53 PM

http://www.abcnews.g...tory?id=8874577

A Grim Anniversary: Jacob Wetterling's Disappearance
Mom Patty Wetterling Talks About Not Giving Up: 'Hope Is a Verb'


Posted Image

Jacob Wetterling as a boy, left. Photo on the right is age-progressed.

Oct. 21, 2009
ELIZABETH VARGAS

Patty Wetterling is getting ready for an anniversary no parent should ever have to mark: It has been 20 years since her oldest son, Jacob, 11 at the time, was snatched away from her in one brutal instant.

Over the past two decades, Wetterling has sustained herself with hope.

"We hope for Jacob, for all of our grandkids, for every child who's home safe today and every child who's missing," she said in an interview with "Nightline."

Wetterling and her husband, Jerry, their three other children, and three grandchildren were gathering at their rural St. Joseph, Minn., home in the lead-up to the anniversary. The family considered the milestone a chance to honor Jacob.

"We learned early on that this, what happened, was way bigger than Jacob and way bigger than our family," Patty Wetterling said. "It's about [like] this entire community was taken. There was an innocence stolen and my hope is that we have been able to pull some of that back and to provide, you know, this world where kids can grow up safe."

ABC News first made contact with Wetterling 10 years ago.

"This is God's country," she said at the time, walking in a cornfield just a half-mile from her house.

It was through the same fields, on a warm autumn night, that Jacob, his brother Trevor and a friend set out on their bikes to pick up a vide

It was the first time Jacob had been out alone at night on his bike.

On the return home, according to the other boys, a masked gunman stopped all three -- and then drove off with Jacob.

On a gravel road was a spot where Jacob's footprints seemed to show resistance. And then...

"It's gone," Wetterling said. "It's just bizarre."

It was just the beginning of a nightmare from which Wetterling has not yet awoken. But something inside her has awoken.

Over the years, Wetterling has found her voice, and her mission: to find Jacob and help protect other children.

"A lot of people ask, 'How do you do it?' How could I not?" she said. "Every parent knows, you would do anything for your children, and our anything [has] got to be a little more than we ever would have dreamed, but you continue. We'll do anything that we can to find him."



#16 La Vina

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Posted 21 October 2009 - 02:58 PM

http://minnesota.pub.../21/wetterling/


Improvements made since Wetterling abduction

October 21, 2009

Improvements made since Wetterling abduction (Audio)

Much has changed in 20 years since then-11-year old Jacob Wetterling was abducted by a masked gunman in St. Joseph, Minnesota. States have established and toughened sex offender registries. And the national AMBER alert system was put into place to broadcast urgent bulletins when a child is abducted.

MPR's Phil Picardi spoke with Ernie Allen, the president and CEO of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.


#17 Jenn

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Posted 22 October 2009 - 05:13 AM

http://www.myfoxtwin...ars_oct_22_2009

Jacob Wetterling Missing for 20 Years
Wetterling family keeps hope, mission alive


Published : Thursday, 22 Oct 2009, 7:43 AM CDT

ST. JOSEPH, Minn. - Thursday marks a major anniversary that forever changed Minnesota -- 20 years ago, somebody kidnapped Jacob Wetterling and he's never been found.

Jacob Wetterling's family and those who work for the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center will spend Thursday doing what they've done for the past two decades -- search for him and try to protect all children.

11-year-old Jacob, his brother and a friend were riding their bikes home from a convenience store in St. Joseph, Minn. when a man wearing a mask and carrying a gun took Jacob and drove off, never to be found again.

Local, state and federal agencies, along with thousands of volunteers, searched exhaustively for Jacob and have looked into more than 50,000 leads of the past 20 years.

Jacob's parents, Jerry and Patty Wetterling, have worked tirelessly not just to try to find Jacob, but to find other missing and exploited children and build safer communities.

FOX 9 News talked to Patty Wetterling just a few days ago before a concert to celebrate children near the family's St. Joseph home.

"There's times when it'll just hit you, it's very sad," Patty Wetterling told FOX 9 News, just a few days ago at a concert for children near the family's home. "Then, there are times when I go to bed at night I need to know I did everything I can today to try and find him. I have these little dialogues with Jacob, it's like, 'Hold on-- we're still trying.'"


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#18 Jenn

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Posted 22 October 2009 - 05:15 AM

http://minnesota.pub.../19/wetterling/

Twenty years on, hope lives for Jacob Wetterling

by Elizabeth Dunbar, Minnesota Public Radio, Phil Picardi, Minnesota Public Radio, Ambar Espinoza, Minnesota Public Radio

Posted Image
In this Aug. 28, 2009 photo, Jerry Wetterling and wife Patty, right, show a photo of their son Jacob Wetterling, who was abducted in October of 1989 in St. Joseph, Minn., and is still missing, in Minneapolis, Minn. (AP Photo/Craig Lassig)


St. Paul, Minn. — It's been 20 years since 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling, his younger brother and a friend set off on their bikes to rent a movie in St. Joseph one night.

As they rode back home in the dark, a masked man with a gun stopped them and told them to get off their bikes and lie face down in a ditch. After telling the man how old they were, 10-year-old Trevor Wetterling and 11-year-old Aaron Larson were told to run away.

Then the man took Jacob, who hasn't been seen since.

Thursday's anniversary, like past anniversaries, will likely come and go for Jerry and Patty Wetterling without them finding out what happened to their son. The Wetterlings and their three other children have learned to survive and cope through the years while never losing sight of the possibility that Jacob could turn up alive.

"That's the grandest hope, and it's certainly there," Jerry Wetterling said this week.

The Wetterlings find hope in recent cases in which kidnapped children were miraculously found alive years later. They also know that anniversaries also often trigger new leads as law enforcement officials and the public hear about the case again through news media reports.

"It just seems to trigger more calls and people kind of researching their memory," Wetterling said.

"Each time it's emotional because you're hoping for the one. And you're waiting and yet it's hard to get too into that particular lead because repeated, repeated disappointments of it not being the one can dampen your spirits," he said. "You learn not to get too swept up into one particular lead."

Despite the regular leads the Stearns County Sheriff's Department still gets each week, little has changed in the Jacob Wetterling case. What has changed is how law enforcement officials handle missing children cases and track those who might kidnap or otherwise harm children.

States have established and toughened sex offender registries, and the national AMBER alert system was put into place to broadcast urgent bulletins when a child is abducted.

"The changes are dramatic," said Ernie Allen, president and CEO of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. "More missing children come home safely today than ever in American history."

Allen said AMBER alerts, sex offender laws and eliminating mandatory waiting periods for law enforcement to search for a missing child have all helped keep more children safe. So has increased awareness among parents, he said.

But there's still room for improvement, he said, adding that sex offender registries must come with enforcement and consequences for those who violate the terms of their release.

"Our view is that at a minimum, we need to know where these offenders are," Allen said. "Two thirds of these offenders are not in jails or prisons, they're in our communities."

The Wetterlings and Aaron Larson learned the hard way that a boy from a small town in Minnesota could be taken away so quickly. On the other hand, such incidents remain few and far between: Only in about 100 cases a year are children abducted and never seen alive again.

"This whole situation with witnesses there at night in the dark and with a gun and mask and all that -- that's very rare...kind of haunting," Jerry Wetterling said.

The incident left Jacob's best friend, Aaron Larson, troubled. He became scared of the dark, didn't sleep well and worried the masked man would return.

"You would lay in bed and think about these things," Larson told the St. Cloud Times.

Through the years, Larson has also thought about how things could have been different.

"That's hard for me sometimes," he told the newspaper. "Why am I still here and he's not?"

Since the abduction, Patty Wetterling and her family have put their efforts into pushing for legislation to help keep children safe. The federal law requiring states to maintain sex offender registries has been in place since 1994 and is named after Jacob. Patty now directs a program on sexual violence prevention for the Minnesota Department of Health.

"The interest, the response, and I really believe the essence of Jacob himself and how he has captured the hearts of so many people ... it's kind of spurred us on to really try to make this better," Jerry Wetterling said.


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#19 La Vina

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Posted 12 November 2009 - 05:39 AM

http://www.westfargo.../group/Opinion/

Review of the Offender Registry System

November 12 2009
Brandie Dixon
West Fargo Pioneer

Recent events relating to child abduction have been headlining in the news and have brought attention to the Offender Registry System. The West Fargo Police Department thought a review of the system and how it works would be pertinent.

Minnesota can be credited with initial development of an offender list. Before 1991, law enforcement did not have an organized, compiled list of sex offenders. When Jacob Wetterling was abducted in 1989, a massive search was organized and numerous leads were generated and logged. These leads actually became the foundation of a massive database that lead to the development of a sex offender list in Minnesota.

While Wetterling has never been found, the legislation passed in Minnesota is credited with the beginning of the Sex Offender Registry that exists today. Since then, several bills and acts have been created and passed on a national level, which include: the 1994 Missing Child Response Act, 1994 Jacob Wetterling Crimes Against Children and Sexually Violent Offender Registration Act, 1996 Megan’s Law, 1996 Pam Lychner Sexual Offender Tracking and Identification Act, 1997 Jacob Wetterling Improvement Acts, the 2000 Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act, and the 2006 Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act.

Because of the evolution of the original offender registration program in 1991, the registry has become a national resource for law enforcement.

The 1991 North Dakota State Legislature passed the first two laws dealing with offender registration. In 1993 the North Dakota State Legislature amended these statutes.

There currently are three categories of offenders covered by the North Dakota Century Code that include offenders against children, sexual offenders and sexually dangerous individuals.

Several agencies in the state are responsible for working together to maintain the registered offender database. In North Dakota, the Office of the Attorney General is responsible for maintaining a statewide database and conducting address verification of offenders. The courts, correctional facilities and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation are responsible for informing convicted offenders of their need to register. Law enforcement agencies are responsible for carrying out the registration process.

Offenders are registered by local police and sheriff’s departments by fingerprinting, photographing, and obtaining the offenders registration information and signature. This information is sent to the Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Criminal Investigation, where the statewide registration database is maintained.

The West Fargo Police Department currently maintains files for 34 registered offenders. Five of these offenders only work in West Fargo and live elsewhere in the community. Offenders are to appear at the law enforcement agency in the jurisdiction of their residence, school enrollment and or employment within three days of moving into that jurisdiction.

West Fargo Police Clerks are responsible for completing the registration paperwork, fingerprinting and photographing each offender. Police Clerks also maintain the files on the registered offenders as well as statistical reports at the end of each month detailing the number of offenders that live or work in West Fargo. The Police Clerks work closely with patrol officers to keep information current and up to date.

“The police clerk staff at the West Fargo Police Department plays a big role in keeping the sexual offender files up to date, as well as processing the new offenders that move into our community,” Detective Sergeant Greg Warren said. “They also update offender information when offenders move to a new address, change vehicles or change their employment.”

West Fargo police officers are assigned at least one offender that they are expected to maintain contact with on a regular basis. These assignments are overseen by Warren. Warren and his staff of investigators are also assigned one or more offenders to maintain contact with.

The offender registration process in West Fargo has changed and evolved drastically since it was first established in 1991.

“When law enforcement started registering offenders, we only dealt with offenders once a week at the most,” Warren said. “Since that time, it has become a daily routine of registering offenders, checking on offenders, keeping the paperwork up to date and notifying the State Bureau of Criminal Investigations of all changes and additions.”

Warren also sits on the Sex Offender Containment Task Force that is made up of officers from the West Fargo Police Department, Fargo Police Department, Cass County Sheriff’s Office, State and Federal Probation, and the Cass County State’s Attorney Office. This task force was created in order to foster open communication and shared information related to offenders in Cass County. The committee meets monthly and discusses any problems relating to the registration of new or existing offenders. They also discuss offenders who have been compliant and are meeting the requirements laid out by the court and parole or probation, whether an offender needs to be on a GPS tracking system, and any failure to register cases that may have occurred with the State’s Attorney Office.

Offenders must register in North Dakota if they have pled guilty to or been convicted of certain criminal offenses. These offenses include several sex offenses such as, but not limited to, gross sexual imposition, corruption of a minor, luring minors by computer and sexual assault. A person also must register if that person has pled guilty or “nolo contend ere” to, or been found guilty of, an offense in another court in the United States, a tribal court, or court of another country, which is equivalent to those offenses.

Individuals convicted of crimes that are not sex offenses but which involve, for example, force against or restraint of a child, are required to register as an “offender against children.” Offenders against children are listed on the state’s offender registry but are not sex offenders.


The Office of the North Dakota Attorney General maintains a Web site – www.sexoffender.nd.gov – that includes a listing of high risk offenders and offenders with a lifetime registration requirement. A printable list of all offenders, regardless of their risk level, also is available. The information on the sex offender Web site is current and updated in real time as it is reported by local law enforcement agencies.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding offender registration, please contact the West Fargo Police Department at 701-433-5500.


#20 La Vina

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 12:46 PM

http://erstarnews.co.../view/10527/26/

Veterans will walk one last time from Anoka to St. Joseph

Saturday, 12 December 2009
Joni Astrup
Associate editor


When Jacob Wetterling was abducted 20 years ago, Mike Clark decided to do something to help the cause of missing and abducted children.

He organized a walk from Anoka to St. Joseph that year. At five-year intervals since, Clark and fellow members of the Anoka County Chapter 470 of the Vietnam Veterans of America make the walk in the days before Christmas.

“I started it because I had a son who was Jacob’s age,” Clark explained.

Today, Clark has five grandchildren.

“I want to leave them with this legacy that you can do things beyond yourself,” he said.

Now 63, Clark said this will be the last such walk for the group. They will leave at 8 a.m. Friday, Dec. 18 from the Anoka Historical Society in Anoka and walk through Elk River to the Wetterling home in St. Joseph. They will arrive there on Sunday, Dec. 20.

Clark expects that they will walk from Anoka through Elk River on Highway 10 and past Big Lake the first day. The second day they will pick up where they left off, and plan to walk to St. Cloud. The third day they will walk from where they ended in St. Cloud to St. Joseph.

The walk is designed to raise awareness of missing and abducted children. 

People are welcome to join the walk, but they must arrange their own transportation to get home.


Clark said they thought their 2004 walk, which was the year of the 15th anniversary of Jacob’s abduction, would be their last one, but they decided to do one more.

“This is the last hurrah,” he said.


About Jacob Wetterling

Jacob Wetterling was kidnapped at the age of 11 on Oct. 22, 1989.

Jacob, his brother, and a friend were bicycling home from a convenience store near their home in St. Joseph when the kidnapping occurred.

He has been missing ever since.





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