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Smart Kidnapping Suspects Due for Arraignment

Smart Kidnapping Suspects Due for Arraignment

Posted - Mar. 19, 2003 at 8:08 a.m.



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(KSL TV) The man and woman accused of kidnapping Elizabeth Smart are scheduled to appear before a judge today.

But even before they show up in court, we are beginning to get a feel for the evidence against them.

Sources tell Eyewitness News it's likely Brian Mitchell, and possibly his wife Wanda Barzee, spent months digging a huge hole in the mountains above the Smart home in anticipation of the abduction.

Prosecutors say Mitchell and Barzee then held Elizabeth Smart in the makeshift hideout for almost five months, chaining her at times to a tree and threatening her life, and the life of her family if she did not follow their demands.

David Yocom/Salt Lake County District Attorney: "WE'RE NOT DEALING WITH JUST A RELIGIOUS ZEALOT THAT WAS LOOKING FOR CONVERTS OR JUST A PLURAL WIFE, WE'RE DEALING WITH A PREDATORY SEX OFFENDER."

They officially charged the pair yesterday with kidnapping, burglary, and sexual assault.

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