Skip to main content
Publish date:

Wetterling family makes statement ahead of release of Jacob case file

The investigative documents will go public on Thursday.

The parents of Jacob Wetterling have made a statement ahead of the release of investigative files into the abduction and murder of their son.

The Stearns County Sheriff's Office is expected to release thousands of pages of documents concerning the investigation into the 11-year-old's 1989 abduction.

The Wetterling family had sought to block the release of some of the documents that they said contained personal information that would infringe their privacy.

Their injunction, which was opposed by several Minnesota media outlets, held up the release of the documents, but was ultimately unsuccessful.

On Wednesday, the eve of the release, the Wetterling family issued a statement.

"It is difficult for us to relive those dark days," it says. "With time, our family is healing and getting stronger and we appreciate all the efforts to make things better for future victims of crime, their families and for all of us.

"Our hearts hurt for anyone who is pained or hurt from the release of this file. Clearly, changes are still needed."

"Hug your children, tell them how unique and special they are, say a prayer, light a candle, hold hands, be with friends and always hope."

It's not clear what changes the Wetterling family is referring to, but the files are expected to contain some information that suggests mistakes in how police went about carrying out the search for Jacob.

The Wetterling abduction was recently the subject of a podcast, In The Dark, by American Public Media, which raised questions about how police handled the case.

The search ended in 2016, when long-time suspect Danny Heinrich admitted to the killing, and directed authorities to where the body was buried.

Ahead of the release of the case file, the Wetterling family asked for this flyer be shared.

Screen Shot 2018-09-19 at 1.56.08 PM

Next Up

u.s. attorney

Minnesotan sentenced after assaulting man with baseball bat

Marshall Wayne Boshey was sentenced to 30 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release.

Target store

Target's gift card discount is back, but for this weekend only

The fine print: for Target Circle members only (but membership is free).

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

Minneapolis teen arrested in St. Cloud after fleeing police in stolen vehicle

The vehicle was stolen in a car-jacking in Minneapolis Thursday.

snow, blowing snow

Winter storm warnings issued with heavy snow set to slam MN

Parts of northern Minnesota could see more than a foot of snow, but there won't be much in the Twin Cities.

D'Angelo Russell

With KAT out, Timberwolves can't upset Nets

D'Angelo Russell stepped up but couldn't overcome Brooklyn's firepower.

Everson Griffen Vikings dot com

Everson Griffen confirms he has bipolar disorder

"I’ve been running from it a long time. I’m not ashamed of it anymore.”

Angela Renee Jones, St. Cloud murder suspect

St. Cloud suspect now charged in two local murder cases

Both murders happened within a day of each other in June.

st anthony 3 crop

Twin Cities police ask for help finding missing 16-year-old

Police say all her family and friends have been contacted, and none of them know where she is.

mpd suspect 12.3.21 - 1 - CROP

MPD releases photos of shooting suspect, asks for public's help

The man is wanted in connection with a fatal shooting that happened Wednesday evening.

redmons popcorn colbert 2

Support grows for Redmon's Popcorn after shop's sudden closure

The county also commented on the situation, saying it hopes to help owner Zack Redmon.


Jacob Wetterling case files to be released next week

The release of the files has been subject to legal challenges.

Wetterling case files reveal bungled response to Jacob's abduction

Tens of thousands of documents have been released on Thursday.

Jacob Wetterling files must be released, judge rules

Jacob's parents say some of the documents are an invasion of privacy.

MN media groups intervene in Wetterling lawsuit, call for release of Jacob case files

The Wetterling family has until Friday to tell a judge which information they want holding back.

Wetterlings given more time to fight release of 'intensely personal' case files

A judge granted an extension because "new issues" have arisen.