Jaycee Dugard kidnapper gets life sentence
Moving victim impact statement from California woman held for 18 years
A serial sex offender was ordered Thursday to spend the rest of his life in prison after the California woman he kidnapped, raped and held captive for 18 years said he and his wife had stolen her life.
Victim Jaycee Dugard was 11 when she was abducted by Phillip and Nancy Garrido as her stepfather watched her walk toward a school bus. She gave birth to two daughters fathered by Garrido while he held her in a secret backyard compound.
The defendants, both wearing orange jumpsuits, made no eye contact with anyone in the courtroom and kept their heads down as Dugard's mother, Terry Probyn, read her daughter's statement at the hearing. Dugard, now 31, was not present in court.
"I chose not to be here today because I refuse to waste another second of my life in your presence," Dugard wrote in a portion of the statement directed to Phillip Garrido. "Everything you ever did to me was wrong and I hope one day you will see that.
"I hated every second of every day for 18 years," she said "You stole my life and that of my family."
It was Dugard's first public statement since she was found 22 months ago.
El Dorado County Superior Judge Douglas Phimister imposed the maximum possible sentence of 431 years to life on 60-year-old Phillip Garrido, calling his treatment of Dugard evil and reprehensible.
Phimister revealed several new details about Dugard's abduction, saying Phillip Garrido used a Taser to subdue her and threatened to stun her again if she tried to escape.
'You reinvented slavery'
"Basically what you did was you took a human being and turned them into a chattel, a piece of furniture, to be used by you at your whim," the judge said. "You reinvented slavery, that's what you did."
Phimister added that the Garridos had "gone shopping" for a young girl to abduct the day they snatched Dugard.
In a presentencing memo justifying a sentence of hundreds of years for Phillip Garrido, District Attorney Vern Pierson said
Dugard spent the first one-and-a-half years after her kidnapping locked in a backyard shed.
She did not leave the backyard for the first four years after her abduction.
Phillip Garrido, who was on parole for a 1976 rape when Dugard was abducted, pleaded guilty to kidnapping and 13 sexual assault charges, including six counts of rape and seven counts of committing lewd acts captured on video.
Deal made to spare Dugard from testifying
His plea was part of a deal with prosecutors that saw Nancy Garrido, 55, sentenced to 36 years to life after pleading guilty to kidnapping and rape.
The deal was designed, in part, to spare Dugard and her children from having to testify at a trial.
In her statement, Dugard called Phillip Garrido a liar and said what Nancy Garrido did to her was evil. She said she hoped both of them would have as many sleepless nights as she had.
"There is no God in the universe that would condone your actions," Dugard said in a portion of the statement directed at Nancy Garrido.
Dugard also said she was doing well now and told Phillip Garrido "you do not matter anymore."
Dugard, who has written a memoir set to be published next month, has strived to preserve her privacy since she was identified during a chance meeting with Phillip Garrido's parole officer.
Fooled psychiatrists and parole officers
The judge marveled that Garrido was able to get paroled for a 1976 rape and kidnapping conviction after only 11 years, saying the defendant had been able to work the penal system to his advantage.
Phimister said Garrido continued fooling psychiatrists and parole officers in the years he held Dugard.
As the judge spoke, Garrido remained motionless and stared straight ahead without speaking.
Phillip Garrido's lawyer Susan Gellman read a statement on her client's behalf.
"He has accepted responsibility for his actions and he has done this without any expectation of leniency and has done this because he wanted to spare everyone, especially Miss Dugard and her children, a trial," Gellman said.
Gellman urged the judge to impose a lighter sentence in light of what she described as Garrido's significant mental health issues.
"I'm not minimizing what happened in this case. It was a terrible thing that happened here, he is remorseful," she said.
"But one lifetime to me seems to be enough."
The judge said he recognized that Garrido had psychological problems but said he thought the sentence was appropriate.
Dugard was grabbed by Nancy Garrido from the South Lake Tahoe street where her family lived and forced into a car driven by Phillip Garrido on June 10, 1991.
Authorities have said the couple drove the girl 270 kilometres south to their home in Antioch and held her prisoner there for the next 18 years, four months and 16 days. At first, she was locked in the shed then confined to a series of tents she would come to share with the daughters fathered by Phillip Garrido and delivered by his wife.
The defendants were arrested in August 2009 after Phillip Garrido inexplicably brought his ragtag clan to a meeting with his parole officer, who had no idea the convicted rapist had been living with a young woman and two girls he described as his nieces.
The state last year paid Dugard a $20 million settlement under which officials acknowledged repeated mistakes were made by parole agents responsible for monitoring Garrido. California has since increased monitoring of sex offenders.