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Calif. kidnapping has similarities to Smart case in Utah

Calif. kidnapping has similarities to Smart case in Utah



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SALT LAKE CITY -- A woman who was kidnapped at the age of 11 is safe, if not completely sound, after 18 years with her abductors. It's a story with eerie similarities to Utah's Elizabeth Smart, who was found nine months after she was kidnapped.

Elizabeth's father, Ed Smart, says this was his nightmare -- his daughter, gone, then suddenly found in the clutches of a madman.

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"There are so many similarities: Touting that ‘God has allowed me to do this.' And that is no excuse for being incompetent, or just being an extremist," he said.

Smart talked to KSL Newsradio Friday morning. He says his daughter Elizabeth was thrilled to hear that Jaycee Dugard is now out of her nightmare. He says victims can just turn into sheer survival mode to get through their ordeal, and he thinks Dugard might now be struggling with feelings of guilt.

File photo of Ed and Elizabeth Smart after Elizabeth was found.
File photo of Ed and Elizabeth Smart after Elizabeth was found.

"But I think (she should) realize you can move forward with your life. Her life is not over. She can have a life for herself and her two children, and try and find some new normalcy -- the new normal for her," he said.

Smart says it's time to change what happens in society. He works now with Radkids and the Pride program, which he says empower children and parents to keep this from happening to them.

To hear the entire interview with Ed Smart, play the audio on this page.

Elizabeth told CNN Friday that her first reaction to being found after she was kidnapped in 2002 was immense relief. She says she wishes Jaycee Dugard the best.

E-mail: mrichards@ksl.com

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Mary Richards

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