Kidnapped at the age of 11 and kept in captivity for 18 years where she was raped, handcuffed and gave birth to two girls, Jaycee Dugard said she could not dream of escaping because she was so badly manipulated.
“I’ve asked myself that question many times. I know there was no leaving. The mind manipulation plus the physical abuse I suffered in the beginning, there was no leaving,” Dugard, now 31, told ABC television in an interview ahead of her memoir “A Stolen Life,” due to be released today.
Dugard was rescued in northern California along with her two daughters in 2009, when her kidnapper and convicted sex offender Phillip Garrido aroused suspicion while on campus at a northern California university.
Dugard has since been reunited with the family that lost her in 1991 and lives with her mother and the two children Garrido fathered with Dugard when she was a teenager.
She told ABC in Sunday’s interview how she survived the ordeal where she was initially raped with the threat of a stun gun — which was also used to kidnap her off the side of a road — until it and the use of handcuffs were no longer needed to keep her from fleeing.
“There’s a switch that I had to shut off,” she said. “I mean, I can’t imagine being beaten to death, you know? And you can’t imagine being kidnapped and raped, you know? So, it’s just, you just do what you have to do to survive.”