Friday 22 September 2017

Dugard tells of pain at giving birth in captivity

Alicia Aramante in San Francisco

Jaycee Dugard, the California woman who was kidnapped and held captive for nearly two decades, talked through tears about both the pain and determination she felt as she gave birth to her captor's child in his backyard while she was still just a girl.

Ms Dugard, who was snatched from a street in 1991, managed to remain composed for most of the interview with Diane Sawyer. However, she became emotional when she talked about seeing the first of two girls fathered by Phillip Garrido.

Asked how old she was at the time of the birth in the city of Antioch, she said "14".

"It was very painful," said Ms Dugard (31), as tears welled in her eyes. "She came out and then I saw her. She was beautiful. I felt I wasn't alone anymore. I had somebody who was mine."

Memoir

Ms Dugard appeared younger than her 31 years as she talked to Sawyer on a couch at her California home. The interview came on the eve of her memoir about her time in captivity, 'A Stolen Life', which will be released today in the US.

She told Sawyer there was "a switch" she had to shut off to emotionally survive her rape and imprisonment.

She described walking to the school bus stop on the day of a fifth-grade field trip and being zapped with a stun gun at age 11.

She said she heard Garrido laughing and telling his wife Nancy Garrido "I can't believe we got away with it."

She recalled the soundproof door of the backyard studio that Garrido shut and locked each time he left her.

"I can still hear it, consciously, when I'm awake," she added.

Without going into many details, Ms Dugard talked about the long, drug-fuelled sex sessions Garrido would put her through, and said that to her great confusion he would cry afterward.

"He would tell me what an awful man he was," she said.

Phillip Garrido (60) was given the maximum possible sentence of 431 years to life in prison last month after pleading guilty to kidnapping and 13 sexual assault charges, while Nancy Garrido (55) was sentenced to 36 years to life after pleading guilty to kidnapping and rape.

Irish Independent

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