Kidnapped and Held Captive for 18 Years: The Tragic Story of Jaycee Dugard

Jaycee Lee Dugard was just 11 years old when she was kidnapped while walking to her local school bus stop. The incident occurred in 1991, and Dugard would be held captive and endure almost two long decades of suffering before finally tasting freedom once more in 2009. Her story captured the attention of American and international media for years and remains one of the most terrifying and tragic examples of kidnapping in American history.

It was later revealed that Dugard had been abducted by husband and wife duo, Phillip and Nancy Garrido. She spent 18 long years with the Garridos, forced to live in a dirty tent in the backyard, lied to, brainwashed, and raped innumerable times, even becoming pregnant twice and giving birth to two baby girls. Eventually, she was found and freed in 2009 and has since attempted to piece her life back together. This is her heartbreaking story – a story of an innocent young girl stolen away and mistreated in the most inhumane of ways – in its entirety.

A Normal Little Girl

Jaycee Lee Dugard was born on May 3 of 1980 in Arcadia, California to parents Terry Dugard and Ken Slayton. Despite being Jaycee’s biological father, Ken never actually knew of her existence as he and Terry split up before the birth and only had a very brief affair. By all accounts, Jaycee enjoyed a regularly normal childhood and was especially close to her mother. Terry had another child with Carl in 1990, a daughter named Shayna. Sadly, Jaycee wouldn’t get to be around to watch her little sister grow up, but was very close to her in the months they got to spend together before Jaycee’s abduction.



As Jaycee recounts in her book, ‘A Stolen Life,’ she spent the evening before her kidnapping teaching her 18-month old sister how to “jump up and down in her crib high. It made her laugh so hard. I love making her laugh.” From this quotation and several others throughout Jaycee’s memoirs, it’s clear to see that the beginnings of a beautiful sisterhood were blossoming between Jaycee and Shayna until that relationship was brought to a sudden and abrupt stop. With her stepfather, Jaycee’s relationship was said to be much more difficult. Jaycee felt that Carl Probyn was always very critical of her and seemed to enjoy tormenting her, but she could never quite understand why writing: “I have never seen this stepfather making fun of his stepkids like Carl used to do to me.”

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