The confessions are part of a plea deal in which Heinrich would not be charged for Jacob's murder. The federal judge said there would be no state prosecutions for crimes committed in1989, the television station reported.
Jacob's parents had been waiting for their son return since 1989, and became advocates for missing children in the years following his disappearance.
"What did I do wrong?"
Heinrich confronted the boys, told Jacob's brother and friend to run and forced Jacob into the vehicle.
Jacob disappeared the evening of October 22, 1989, as he rode home on his bike with his younger brother, Trevor, and his best friend. With a police scanner in the vehicle, Heinrich could hear the response of law enforcement to the abduction. Even as search parties passed by, he forced Jacob to duck down.
He later told the court how he impulsively shot and killed the 11-year-old with a revolver in a panic after he said he saw a police vehicle drive by without any lights on.
Heinrich sexually abuses Jacob and shoots him twice, according to court testimony on September 6, 2016. I want to say to Jacob, I'm so sorry. After 20-30 minutes, Jacob told Heinrich he was cold.
Jacob asked to go home, but Heinrich told him he couldn't take him all the way home.
"What I really wanted to say today about Jacob is that he's taught us all how to live, how to love, how to be fair, how to be kind", she said, as tears streamed down the cheeks of others in the room. Heinrich said in court he shot and killed Wetterling after hearing a police auto in the area on Highway 23 near Paynesville.
"I said I can't take you all the way home", Heinrich said.
"I raised the revolver to his head, clicked once with no bullet in the chamber". He held the gun to the boy's head and pulled the trigger. "Looked back, he was still standing", Heinrich said, according to the newspaper. "I raised the revolver again and shot him again", Heinrich told the court.
Heinrich said he left the scene but went back later to bury the body.
Sanner also stated that the Wetterling family's approval was involved in the agreement process reached with Heinrich.
Here's a snapshot of what happened since Jacob was taken.
DNA testing has linked Heinrich to the Cold Spring abduction and sexual assault.
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Patty Wetterling also thanked Jared Scheierl, a Minnesota man whose own sexual assault as a 12-year-old was long suspected to be connected to Jacob's disappearance.
In a re-investigation of the 1989 case, state authorities searched Heinrich's home past year and found evidence of child pornography.
"Once they realized they had a strong, legitimate case against Mr. Heinrich for other crimes, in this case child pornography, they aggressively prosecuted him for anything and everything they could get", Heffelfinger said.
Authorities searched Heinrich's home in July 2015, finding child pornography in three-ring binders and on a computer hard drive.
Heinrich would be 73 after serving a 20-year sentence. His fate remained one of Minnesota's most haunting mysteries until last week.
He has been jailed in Sherburne County since his arrest last summer.
Supporters form what is now known as the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center.
Heinrich's attorneys walked quickly by the media without comment.
Last Wednesday, Heinrich led a team of Federal Bureau of Investigation agents and state and county investigators to a pasture near Paynesville where Wetterling's skeletal remains were buried, according to a source with direct knowledge of the search.
Heinrich was asked to describe during the court hearing what happened the night of October 22, 1989, the last night Wetterling was seen alive.
In the late 1980s, Heinrich was living in an old apartment building in the heart of downtown Paynesville.
The three boys were on their bikes and shining flashlights to light their way. On Wednesday, the excavation was scheduled to take place.
Scheierl told police his attacker wore camouflage and army boots and had a "walkie-talkie" type of device in the auto. That ultimately led to Saturday's announcement that Jacob's remains finally had been found.
Documents depict 1989 as a year of change for Heinrich. "So we investigated with everything that we could". That is what gets us up in the morning; that is the hope.
Heinrich "stated emphatically he was not guilty, that he was being framed, and that he was not going to talk to the interviewing agents", court documents say. Slowing his vehicle, he asked the boys to stop.