Cold Case Revisited: Abduction Of Jacob Wetterling

By Caroline Lowe, WCCO-TV

ST. JOSEPH, Minn. (WCCO) — As Caroline Lowe prepares to start a new adventure at KSBY in California, she’s spending the next couple of weeks revisiting cold cases she’s profiled over the past several decades as a crime reporter for WCCO.

Lowe keeps a wall of photos of the victims next to her desk so she’ll never forget them. When she clears out her desk for the last time, Lowe said she’ll put the photos in an album to take with her to California.

Before leaving, Lowe wanted to revisit one of Minnesota’s most notorious cold cases: the abduction of Jacob Wetterling.

It has been more than 21 years since 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling was kidnapped by a masked gunman as Jacob, his brother and a friend biked home from a convenience store in rural St. Joseph, Minn.

Jacob has not been since that day in October 1989. A police search last summer of a farm next to the road where Jacob was last seen turned up no new evidence.

Lowe has done dozens of stories on the case that has gripped Minnesotans for more than two decades and has become close to Jacob’s mother, Patty Wetterling.

Lowe and Wetterling sat down for a final interview before Lowe leaves for California.

For more than 21 years, Wetterling has carried Jacob’s last photo in her wallet, never giving up hope she will see him again one day,

“I know all the numbers but every once in awhile you get that call, well it could be, it could be, you know, and since we don’t know, you have to remain open to whatever it is,” said Wetterling.

“My best way of finding justice in all of this is to be happy and to have my kids be happy. Then we win and this guy doesn’t win,” she said.

“We need answers, all of us,” Wetterling told Lowe. “I honestly have no idea who did this. I don’t have a clue. ”

Wetterling also thanked Lowe for her coverage of Jacob’s abduction.

“You’ve just been a significant part of the journey,” said Wetterling.

  • Brandy BlackBull

    Have they considered hiring a famous psychic? Maybe, that will help solve what happend. Never know, it’s a good idea. There’s nothing to lose trying to find out what happend. Just my opinion I would use one.

  • Independent Spirit

    Bless you wetterling family…………for all your trials, tribulations emotions, ups and downs……Your experience has changed the laws and helped countless others………………I pray that you find what happened to precious Jacob………..for god has had a plan………….and sometimes the catalyst is something we never would have imagined, to impact many other lives.

    Thank You Patty, for your strength, in helping others thru your plight.

  • Cath

    I don’t think God planned Jacob’s disappearance, that’s the whole free will thing that some get so wrong. I too wish we knew. If Jacob wasn’t safe and we don’t know, it’s possible others still are prey to some evil predator. For Patty & her family I wish peace and that Jacob’s spirit helps them through. It’s really sad to not be able to see all he could have been. We’re missing a lot of children and it’s wrong. It will never be past time to act and try to bring about resolve for such wonderful people. I still think about Jacob, never having met him, but having a child his age.

  • Hmm

    The only way this will get solved is if the killer leaves a note before he dies with evidence linking him to the crime.

  • David Roberts

    I have always waited for the Day to see Jacob to come Home . It would be nice

  • Adam Brabender

    Reply; Hmm
    How do we know that Jacob Wetterling was killed. Maybe try a Psychic Detective like Annette Martin. Her web address is Hope this helps and God Bless to the Wetterling

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    […] got another DWI in 1986 – just three years before Wetterling’s kidnapping. He blew a .17, and then tried to run from the arresting officer. He also punched and kicked the […]

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