Kidnapper gets 431 years in jail

Posted: 3rd June 2011 by Doc in Uncategorized
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THE COUPLE who kidnapped Jaycee Lee Dugard in 1991 and held her captive for nearly two decades were sentenced to prison Thursday, after listening to angry and emotionally wrought statements from the victim and her family.

Philip Garrido, 60, received a term of 431 years in prison. His wife, Nancy, 55, was sentenced to 36 years to life. Both waived their right to appeal as part of their sentence.

Dugard, who was kidnapped at age 11 and held for 18 years, was not in the courtroom. But her mother, Terry Probyn, read a statement from Dugard, who is now 31.

“There is no God in the universe who would condone your actions,” Dugard wrote. “You stole my life and that of my family.”

But, Dugard told the Garridos, “you do not matter anymore.”

Probyn also spoke of her own suffering as she wondered what had happened to her blonde, blue-eyed daughter after the abduction.

“I thought I was going insane,” she said, adding, “My baby was gone.”

Hands shaking, her voice rose.

“It was you, Nancy Garrido, and it was you, Philip Garrido, that broke my heart,” she said, adding: “I hate you both.”

The judge, Douglas C. Phimister of El Dorado County Superior Court, was stern in a lengthy dissection of Philip Garrido’s life as an experienced and manipulative criminal who snatched Dugard off a South Lake Tahoe street and then raped and imprisoned her.

“You took a human being and turned them into chattel,” Phimister said. “You reinvented slavery.”

The Garridos sat placidly in court, hands in the pockets of their orange jumpsuits, their hair grayed.

The couple had confessed to their crimes and pleaded guilty in April to kidnapping Dugard in South Lake Tahoe, about 50 miles east of Placerville, and then holding her at their home outside Antioch, Calif., a Bay Area suburb.

Philip Garrido, a convicted sex offender, raped Dugard, eventually fathering two girls by her. Dugard became pregnant with her first child at 13 and for a second time when she was 16.

In court Thursday, Stephen Tapson, a lawyer for Nancy Garrido, read a brief statement on her behalf, saying that while “being sorry is not enough,” she loved both Dugard and her two children. Of her sentence, Garrido said, “I deserve every moment of it.”

In August 2009, authorities discovered Dugard after the campus police at the University of California, Berkeley, alerted parole authorities to Philip Garrido’s suspicious activities and statements made on campus. It was soon discovered that Garrido, who had served 11 years in prison for the rape of a Nevada casino worker in 1976, had been holding Dugard at his home and in a secret backyard compound constructed behind it.

Tapson had long maintained that Nancy Garrido did not rape Dugard but that she was aware the sexual abuse was going on, saying that both she and her husband had become addicted to methamphetamine, and that the drug had fueled their actions.

But she pleaded guilty to both kidnapping and forcible rape.

Philip Garrido was sentenced on a larger array of crimes, which Phimister outlined in exhaustive fashion Thursday, adding that he believed that Garrido had tried to hide his crimes and play up any mental illness to avoid punishment.

The Garridos married in 1981 after meeting in a federal penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kan., where he was serving time and where she had gone to visit a relative.

Dugard, who plans to publish a memoir next month about her experience, now lives with her two children in a secret location. In July 2010, the State of California settled a claim with her and her children that state parole agents had not adequately monitored Garrido.

Susan Gellman, a lawyer for Philip Garrido, said in court that he was also remorseful, and that he agreed with the depiction of his life of depravity, violence and crime. But, Gellman said that Garrido was suffering “mental health issues,” including a desire to “tell his story,” something he gave up by pleading guilty.

In his final statement, Phimister said Garrido would not feel the same desire while incarcerated, suggesting that other prisoners would want to hear “what a wonderful story this was.”

“What you did to this child is beyond horrible,” the judge said. “May you think long and hard about what you did.”

http://thechronicleherald.ca/World/1246647.html

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