The man who admitted to kidnapping Jayme Closs and killing her parents, setting off an anguishing months-long search for the Wisconsin teenager, was involved in a prison brawl with another inmate, newly released video shows.
Jake Patterson, 22, could be seen in surveillance footage from August provided by the New Mexico Corrections Department getting into an altercation with a man in a white T-shirt.
It's unclear what they were talking about, but while other inmates watched television, the man appeared to lunge at Patterson, leading Patterson to swing at the man's head. The pair tussled for several seconds as the man repeatedly struck Patterson before they broke apart.
Let our news meet your inbox. The news and stories that matters, delivered weekday mornings.
A guard could be seen firing a bean bag gun toward them. Patterson, who is serving a life sentence in prison, put his hands in the air and lay down.
The fight was initially reported last month by the Green Bay Press-Gazette, which said the incident occurred about a month after Patterson was transferred from a prison in Wisconsin to New Mexico.
Prison officials said two inmates told Patterson on Aug. 28 that he had to leave the pod and couldn't "stay on the line" because of his case, according to documents obtained by the newspaper.
While Patterson reportedly tried to talk to whoever wanted him gone, an inmate later warned Patterson not to "test him," leading to the fight. Neither Patterson nor the man were seriously injured, the documents said.
The New Mexico Corrections Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment about whether Patterson and the inmate were disciplined. The Press-Gazette reported Patterson was initially placed in restricted housing pending the outcome of an investigation.
Patterson was sentenced in May for the October 2018 kidnapping of Closs, now 14. He said he stalked Closs before holding her captive for 88 days.
Prosecutors also said Patterson murdered her parents, James and Denise Closs, with a shotgun, before taking the girl to his cabin in the isolated town of Gordon, about 60 miles from the Closs home in Barron.
During his sentencing, Barron County Circuit Court Judge James Babler described Patterson as the "embodiment of evil." Patterson apologized at the time, saying "I would do, like, absolutely anything to take back what I did."
Erik Ortiz is an NBC News staff writer focusing on racial injustice and social inequality.