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Conference Interrupted by Former Kidnapper

Conference Interrupted by Former Kidnapper

Posted - Mar. 7, 2004 at 9:22 p.m.



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(St. George-AP) -- A man who kidnapped a 41-year-old woman twice as a child allegedly showed up at a women's conference in St. George over the weekend to interrupt her speech and book signing. He's also charged with running over a security volunteer who tried to stop him.

Jan Broberg Felt hasn't seen her two-time abductor, 68-year-old Robert Ersol Berchtold, since she was rescued by the F-B-I first at age 12, then at age 14.

However, Berchtold showed up at the Saturday conference at Dixie State College and asked a volunteer to distribute some papers.

The volunteer says he asked to see the literature first, but Berchtold threatened him.

When the volunteer walked away, he says Berchtold drove his white minivan into him, striking his right knee, flipping him in front of the van and dragging him for about 110 yards.

The man was in pain, but doctors found no broken bones. Berchtold was arrested at a McDonald's after the incident.

Felt was inside at the conference and did not see Berchtold. However, she says she's "frightened" by his visit.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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