Man suspected of imprisoning girl was paroled rapist

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Personal Injury News

Article Date: 8/28/2009 | Resource: MLG

Man suspected of imprisoning girl was paroled rapist

“Girl, who later had his children, kept in backyard shed, police say.”

A convicted rapist kidnapped 11-year-old Jaycee Lee Dugard, fathered her two daughters, and kept his manufactured family hidden away in a soundproof shed and tents in his Antioch back yard for the past 18 years, officials said in a news conference this afternoon.

Dugard, kidnapped from a Lake Tahoe bus stop in 1991, was reunited with her mother today after years of abuse and living isolated from the world in what seemed like the least likely of outcomes.

Philip Garrido, 58, who was on parole after serving prison time for kidnapping and rape, and his wife, Nancy, 55, were arrested Wednesday on suspicion of kidnapping. They are being held in lieu of $1 million bail each.

According to officials, Dugard, who spent her early years in Orange County, was relegated to a secret compound behind the Garrido’s home – including a soundproofed shed that could be opened only from the outside. She had no contact with the outside world, said El Dorado County Undersheriff Fred Kollar.

Dugard gave birth to a little girl when she was just 14, the result of being raped by Garrido, authorities said. Garrido fathered a second child with Dugard two years later, authorities said.

The two girls lived with their mother in the compound, masked by tall trees and a blue tarp that had to be pushed aside to get to the compound. Garbage cans and a dishwasher completed the charade, hiding the Garridos’ secret from parole officer visits.

The compounds were powered by electrical cords. There was a makeshift outhouse and a makeshift shower.

The silver Mercury Zephyr thought to have been used in her abduction was found at the compound. Among the misery, there were concessions to childhood. A swing set. A trampoline. Broken-down children’s toys littered the compound’s yard.

“Living in a back yard for the past 18 years does takes its toll,” said Kollar. “But she was in good health.”

Authorities are looking into whether Phillip Garrido also abused his daughters, but there were no obvious signs of abuse, Kollar said.


The improbable reunion of mother and daughter started with Phillip Garrido’s fixation with voices. The voices put a “human mind under a hypnotic siege that in time leads a person to build a delusional belief system,” he wrote on his blog.

But he had made a discovery about these voices, figured them out, put them into a system that would “open the minds of religious leaders, scientists, psychiatrists, physicists and educators worldwide,” he wrote.

On Tuesday, Garrido took his two teenage daughters to the UC Berkeley campus to distribute literature on his beliefs, Kollar said.

A campus police officer noticed the two girls with Garrido. A background check – required to pass out literature on the campus – revealed Garrido was on parole, Kollar said. The campus police officer called Garrido’s parole officer, who thought it was odd, because he had never seen any children at Garrido’s home.

The parole officer scheduled an interview with Garrido for the next day. When Garrido came, he brought the two girls – ages 11 and 15 – as well as a young woman he called “Alissa,” and his wife, Nancy.

Under questioning, he admitted that the young woman was Jaycee Lee Dugard and that he was the one who had kidnapped her in 1991, state Department of Corrections officials said.

Terry Probyn was at work at the Riverside School District on Wednesday afternoon when the FBI called, said Probyn’s husband, Carl. She called her husband.

“They found Jaycee,” she said. She let 10 seconds go by, letting the news sink in. “She’s alive.”

“We cried for 10 minutes,” Carl Probyn said. “My voice hasn’t come back yet.”

Terry Probyn took a 6 a.m. flight to Northern California on Thursday to meet with police and see Jaycee.

Carl Probyn, of Orange, said his wife said Jaycee “remembered everything” about her childhood. She is “positive” she is Jaycee. Authorities said DNA tests are being conducted to confirm the woman’s identity.

Jaycee has custody of her two girls.

El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson said that a criminal complaint against the Garridos would be filed Friday, but did not specify what charges would be brought. Statutes of limitations may have expired on many of the charges that can be brought against the Garridos.


Carl and Terry Probyn moved from Garden Grove to Lake Tahoe in September 1990 to try to escape crime and other problems of city life. But they could not escape two predators who stole their little girl and replaced her with heartbreak.

On June 10, 1991, Carl Probyn, was in his garage watching Jaycee walk up a hill to a bus stop. He saw a gray sedan with two people inside pass the house and make a U-turn toward Jaycee, according to news accounts at the time.

The passenger reached out of the car and grabbed Jaycee, pulling her kicking and screaming inside.

Probyn hopped on his bike and chased after the car, but ran out of steam peddling uphill. He went back to the house and yelled for neighbors to call 911.

Hundreds of law enforcement officers began the search. The case received widespread media attention and intense investigation, but Jaycee could not be found. Carl and Terry Probyn separated afterward because of the strain.

“This broke us up,” Carl Probyn said. “For the first 10 years, (Terry) wouldn’t celebrate Christmas. She’d take vacation and just cried for the week.”

Carl Probyn was suspected in Jaycee’s disappearance. He took lie detector tests. His own relatives paid a private investigator, who was focusing on him.

“I went through hell,” he said Thursday.


Garrido’s criminal history dates back to the 1970s.

He was convicted of rape by force or fear and paroled from a Nevada state prison in 1988, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Garrido is listed on California’s Megan’s Law Web site.

Authorities believe Garrido was prowling for victims when he came across 11-year-old Jaycee waiting for the bus.

Garrido wrote about his religious believes on an online blog. On voicesrevealed.blogspot.com, he claims that “the Creator has given me the ability to speak in the tongue of Angels in order to provide a wake-up call that will in time include the salvation of the entire world.”


Now free of her captors, Jaycee is facing reintegrating into the world as she copes with the loss of her childhood and her innocence.

And Jaycee, now a mother, must also help her daughters through the pain they are going through, according to mental health experts.

“She’s got so many levels of trauma she’s going to have to deal with to get past this,” said Beth Hassett, executive director of WEAVE Inc., an organization to help victims of sexual assault.

Garrido was both a captor and father figure to the young girl, Hassett said. And then he was a child abuser and fathered her two daughters.

“(Victims) think ‘he loves me. He’ll never do it again. Then, oh my gosh, he did it again,’ ” Hassett said. “It’s their bonding that keeps them in this relationship. We don’t even know if she wanted to get away.”

The transition will not be easy, Hassett said. Many abuse victims suffer post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression, she said.

“It is such an extreme case of isolation,” she said. “Did they even know there was a street 10 feet away?”

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Jeffrey Marquart