Experts shocked by Patterson criminal complaint, kids should know it's rare and not the norm

January 14, 2019 06:42 PM

Even the most seasoned experts in child abuse are shocked by what the criminal complaint alleges Jake Patterson did to Jayme Closs and her parents. 

So imagine what children are going to think?


Professionals say the details are frightening. But people need to remember this is a worst case scenario and very rare.

KSTP's Jayme Closs coverage

"Scary and horrified," said Jane Straub, a Victim Assistance Specialist with the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center. "This is something we don't want to be existing in the world."

Straub says parents need to remind kids bad things happen, but there are many, many good people out there. 

"And this is an extremely rare case," said Straub. "So we don't want to have this case be the norm for kids and this be the norm for not being safe. This is an extreme case. But we still want to be talking about all the other safety tips."

Straub said scared kids are not smarter kids. Talk to them about what they see on the news. 

More from KSTP:

How the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center assists families like Jeremy Jourdain's

"This is something that is scary to kids and it's scary to adults. But we never want to be in the position where we're scared and we're not going to do anything. We're going to read this and we're going try to learn from this and we're going to hopefully have action [going] forward," Straub said.

Straub advises parents to talk to their children, answer their questions and reassure them; let them know they are loved and safe.

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Kevin Doran

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