In Antioch, California, all was quiet at 1:30 in the morning today on the street where Phillip Garrido held a young girl hostage for 18 years after her kidnapping from her home in South Lake Tahoe in 1991. There was no sign of police or reporters on the dark street in the middle of the night. Jaycee Lee Dugard, now 29, was 11 years old when she disappeared. Wednesday, Phillip Garrido, 58, and his wife Nancy Garrido, 54, were arrested for investigation of conspiracy and kidnapping. Garrido is also being held for sexual penetration, lewd and lascivious acts with a minor and rape by force.
Jaycee, known as Alyssa in her life of imprisonment at the Garrido residence, reportedly bore two children fathered by Garrido. The 11 and 15 year old children were kept captive in a compound at the back of the property. They never attended school, and never saw a doctor according to Undersheriff Fred Kolar.
Jaycee was known as daughter to Garrido by people who met her, the two younger children her siblings, but they were Jaycee’s children by Garrido making her a teenager when she gave birth to the two children.
In 1988 Phillip Garrido was paroled from a Nevada state prison after he had served time for another rape case of a young woman he took hostage from a grocery store parking lot. He held the 25 year old casino worker hostage in a storage unit that was set up like a small apartment.
He was on lifetime parole for the conviction, but in 18 years he was able to keep Jaycee and her two children without any officials finding out. It does raise questions regarding the parole system used in Garrido’s case.
The house is in an older Antioch neighborhood situated on a narrow road with long time growth around the property and plenty to block the view into the back yard.
Although the houses around the property are close enough to be able to hear voices in the backyard if you are listening for them, the lot is narrow and deep. The house is set close to the street leaving plenty of room in the deep backyard to build a compound to keep the young woman and the two children.
For a view of the neighborhood, and an over head view of the house and backyard, go to Google Earth and type in the address listed on his California sex offender listing, 1554 Walnut Ave, Antioch, California. This could have been anyone’s neighbor. From the outside there is nothing odd or unique. It looks like any other house in the area. At night it is quiet and calm, nothing out of the ordinary when you drive through the neighborhood. In fact it is eerily quiet, only a few blocks from the local graveyard.
Reunited with her birth mother and in good health when brought in, Jaycee will have to get accustomed to a new life of freedom. What other trauma she may have been exposed to in the Antioch residence is yet to be revealed.
What made Jaycee stay for so long when she may have had chances to report her captor? Did she suffer from Stockholm Syndrome in which the victim is so psychologically controlled by manipulations from their captor or victimizer that they show abnormal loyalty to the very person or people who put them in the dangerous situation ?
As in other shocking criminal cases, the neighbor did not see him as any threat or notice anything wrong. But with the pains he took to conceal the young woman and her children and keep them from the public eye by keeping them controlled or locked away, it really isn’t surprising that he was able to pull this off for so many years.
Unless they have established a good neighborhood community bond, people tend to keep to themselves in local suburban neighborhoods too. If they weren’t looking for it or didn’t have a clue it was happening, how would they know? When the children were seen in person, they were well behaved. Jaycee herself appeared happy, involved with the family printing business according to a local real estate agent Deepal Karunaratne, who used Garrido’s printing services and dealt with Jaycee directly.
The failure may have been partially in the parole system that somehow let this slip through unnoticed for so long. Registered sex offenders can easily be looked up online in California at http://www.meganslaw.ca.gov/. Type in Phillip Garrido’s name and it clearly comes up on the government site as a sex offender, even listing his previous conviction as 261 (a)(2), rape by force/fear/etc. seen here:
Perhaps the neighbors should have been notified that a convicted sexual offender was living in their midst, if they were not.
In March of 2008, Garrido applied for a business license at his home in Antioch . The business is listed as Gods Desire, seen here on the California Business Portal, a government website.
His website www.Godsdesire.net is already shut down now, but a screen shot of the site can be seen here.
On the site he claims to have developed the ability to make voices with his mind. He wrote,” 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.”
Garrido also lists himself as, “The Man Who Spoke With His Mind”. Chillingly this brings to mind previous disturbed perpetrators, Charles Manson and cult leader Jim Jones, convincing and believable enough to destroy lives without a pause, somehow justifying their actions to themselves while they victimize others.
Phillip and Nancy Garrido are being held on $1 million bail.
California Business Portal
Office of the Attorney General of California, Megan’s Law
Yahoo News Canada
Reno Gazette Journal