Family's similar path with Wetterlings'

A family's parallel path with the Wetterling family

PAYNESVILLE, Minn. – For 27 years, she’s been the other mother looking for answers on what happened to her son.

But Lucinda Scheierl always knew the difference between her journey and that of Patty Wetterling.

“I got Jared back. I did. I got my son back,” Scheierl told KARE 11 at her son’s Paynesville home.

In January 1989, the then 12-year-old Jared Scheierl was abducted, sexually assaulted and let go near his home in Cold Spring. When a masked man took 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling nine months later – using a similar approach and commands – investigators quickly connected the two cases.

“There’s a lot. A lot of emotions you go through. So many different emotions,” Lucinda Scheierl said about the days after her son’s assault.

For decades, Lucinda Scheierl prayed for answers for her son and the Wetterling family. That while Jared Scheierl also sought answers by talking to other sexual assault victims and encouraging law enforcement to review his case. In the end, a DNA match from Scheierl’s case ultimately led investigators to 53-year-old Danny Heinrich. Heinrich confessed to both Wetterling’s murder and Scheierl’s abduction and assault in court last week.

“I’m very proud of Jared. I’m glad the DNA finally was found and matched,” Lucinda Scheierl said.

And while proud of her son, Scheierl is also thinking of another mother – one whose son never returned home.

“She’s an amazing woman. Amazing woman,” Scheierl said of Patty Wetterling, adding, “It’s almost like a miracle to me. But I’m glad Jacob was found. And he can be put to rest now.”


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