Thinking Jacob. Again.

I’ve done some crazy things in my life. Like quitting my job during an economic recession. Learning to snowboard when I turned 40. Or becoming obsessed with a rundown beach house named Villa am Meer.

But maybe nothing as crazy as this.

In the past few weeks, I have met and interviewed two of the lead witnesses in the Jacob Wetterling abduction. Dan Rassier is the neighbor whose farm was searched in June 2010, and Kevin is the witness who came forward in 2003, saying it was his tire tracks they found in Dan Rassier’s driveway that evening.

I have heard their stories and plan to tell them here. Why? Well, that’s a question I can’t answer entirely. I don’t even know the answer myself. All I know, is that… for whatever reason… I just can’t stop “thinking Jacob.”

A little over two years ago, I blogged extensively about Jacob’s story. (Read it here, from the beginning.) After reviewing all the facts, I came to my own conclusion. Someone SAW those boys heading to the Tom Thumb that night and KNEW they would be returning down that same dead end road. That person had time to put on a ski mask, get a gun, stash a car (if a car was used as a getaway vehicle), position himself in the driveway, and wait for the boys to return home.

However, this theory does not bode well for Dan Rassier, whose driveway lies directly across from the abduction site. It also doesn’t help that he was home alone that night or that police didn’t search his house. In effect, he has no alibi.

Here’s just part of his story. In February of 2004, not long after Kevin came forward and admitted he had left his tire tracks in Rassiers’ driveway, detectives from the Stearns County Sheriff’s Department and the BCA flat-out accused Dan Rassier of kidnapping Jacob. They told him to just admit it. They tried to convince him his story had changed over the years, even though it had not.

Then, in June of 2010, authorities arrived at the Rassier family home with a search warrant, looking for evidence in Jacob’s disappearance. The farm had already been searched twice before, but this time, they came with heavy digging equipment, taking dirt samples from the farm’s gravel pit. His parents, 86 and 80 at the time, were treated roughly. When they were told to leave their home, Mrs. Rassier was pulled off the bench where she was sitting, fell to the floor, then was strong-armed out of the house and onto the porch. Mr. Rassier became so upset, his son was sure he was about to have a heart attack.

The truth is, I believe Dan Rassier has very valuable information that has never been released to the public. I also believe Kevin has very valuable information to share. And although both of these men have been cooperative and forthcoming about what they witnessed that night, they believe their words have been twisted, taken out of context, and reported haphazardly.

Over the next several weeks, I am going to lay out this case detail by detail. I guarantee you will hear information you’ve never heard before that will change your mind about what happened that night. Lies and hearsay will be put to rest, bad reporting will be exposed, and hopefully, new information will come to light.

Dan, Kevin, and I are all working together on this, and we are all willing to answer your questions. However, please ask nicely; this is not a platform for haters. We are doing this for one reason, and one reason only. We all want to find out what happened to Jacob.

In the meantime, you’d better get up to speed. I encourage you to read my Jacob story from the very beginning. Here’s the link again.

I also encourage you to review this timeline that details the entire investigation from 1989-2010:

View Jacob Wetterling Investigation Timeline…

Read next chapter…


  1. Wow, Joy, thanks for bringing me up to speed. Better minds than mine (yours!) are working on this mystery.
    Can’t wait to hear more.

  2. I can’t wait to learn more. Hope you get time to write more soon!!

  3. Joy,
    I agree with Jane and Stacey! I count the seconds to the next entry! If you have stuff to do let us know what it is, we will do it for you so you can write! 🙂

  4. Joy, your research and writing are a gift. I sincerely hope and pray that the Wetterling family can learn answers, resolution and peace as a result of all your hard work. I cannot imagine the agony of not knowing what happened to Jacob; there is no closure. Thank you for your blog!

  5. Just starting to read it now 🙂 Thank you so much for all your work. I have been watching this case for years!!! and hope that Jacob can be brought home soon. Im watching all the way from Ireland. I had a son last year and called him Jacob and his birthday just happened to land on the 4th of July. gonna get mad researching your links now. Thanks again. I do have some questions but will do the reading of all posts before I lay them out.

  6. Hi Joy, Jacobs story has brought me to tears and I can’t imagine being in the shoes of his family, especially his Mother. When I saw her face in that one interview she didn’t speak but the look on her face was so lost. I could not stop crying for her. Thank you for covering this and I hope and pray they find closure. One thing I’d like to know, did they ever collect a DNA sample from Jared at the hospital back in 1989? Thanks and God Bless!

  7. Sara Greenwell |


    Have they checked into Michael Devlin from Kirkwood,MO. He kidnapped Shawn Hornbeck at 11 years old and then Ben O. At 13. In his history on Wikipedia, it said he went out of state at times. He is in jail now maybe they should give him a lie detector test. I have a gut feeling these are not the only two boys he abused. He almost killed Shawn. Never give up on this case. I have three sons and could not even imagine this families pain. God bless. I will keep praying they find closure.

  8. Rachel Lewis |

    You have done so many great things with this case I wish that you could uncover the missing information in a missing persons case that’s been bothering me for years! you rock

  9. As others, I anxiously await your next writing and I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your consistency on pursuing these needed answers. If ever you need a little help or even just a word of support, feel free to contact me!! Smiley of the MN AMBER Alert Fundraiser Team. God bless you!!

  10. I’m glad that they have finally named the new person of interest in Jacob’s disappearance. There are so many similar connections to all the victim’s stories. Thanks so much Joy for investigating the Paynesville and Cold Spring cases in regards to Jacob’s.

  11. Joy, thinking of all you’ve done to keep this case alive in the hearts and minds of so many people. For Daniel H. ,to finally break his silence and lead officials to Jacob, is nothing short of a miracle. Without Jared coming forward and his case cracking the DNA of Daniel H. the monster responsible may have never been found. 1 Blog , has taught us much about the spirit of people uniting for a cause, Find Jacob.

  12. Well Joy, you did it! Laid out the info detail by detail. And…through YOUR investigative prowess, you FOUND JACOB. You are the one who connected the dots when others allowed the dots to drift on by. Thank you for being focused to the end! You know I love ya, Cuz!!

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