Who is Jaycee Dugard? The story of her kidnapping and what life is like now

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When Jaycee Dugard was 11 years old, on June 10, 1991, she was abducted on her way to school in South Lake Tahoe, California.

Eighteen years passed before she was discovered and reconnected with her family. 

She was taken by Phillip and Nancy Garrido, who kept her outside in their backyard filled with tents and sheds. 

Jaycee Dugard 11-years-old

Jaycee Dugard was abducted on her way to school in 1991, when she was 11 years old. (Mark Boster/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)


“I just wanted to go home,” she said during her testimony, per the New York Times. “I kept telling him that, you know, ‘I don’t know why you’re doing this. If you’re holding me for ransom, my family doesn’t have a lot of money.’”

During her years in captivity, she was repeatedly raped by Phillip, was impregnated twice and gave birth to two of his daughters.

Below is more on Dugard’s kidnapping, and what her life looks like today. 

  1. When was Jaycee Dugard found?
  2. Where are Phillip and Nancy Garrido now?
  3. Did Jaycee Dugard keep her daughters?
  4. What is Jaycee Dugard doing now?

1. When was Jaycee Dugard found?

Dugard was found in 2009, after she had been held in captivity for 18 years. 

Her discovery came after Phillip went to the University of California, Berkeley campus, seeking an event permit with his two daughters. 


After campus police found his behavior to be strange, they ran a background check on him, discovering that he had been previously convicted of sex crimes, according to the Crime Museum. 

His parole officer called him in for a meeting, where Phillip was accompanied by Nancy, his two daughters, and Jaycee, who was going by the name Alissa. 

Jaycee Dugard missing t-shirt

It was 18 years after her abduction that Jaycee Dugard was finally found and reunited with her family. (Kim Komenich/Getty Images)

It was after Phillip had admitted to kidnapping and raping Jaycee that she revealed her true identity. 

After her story was revealed, there were theories that she developed Stockholm syndrome during her captivity, a term that refers to forming an attachment to a captor, kidnapper or abuser, according to Psychology Today. 

Dugard has pushed back on those theories and said the reason behind her sticking to her alias and refraining from attempting an escape was for the safety of her daughters. 

“I couldn’t leave. I had the girls,” she said in her testimony, per The New York Times. Jaycee has also strongly refuted that she ever had Stockholm syndrome.

“It’s degrading having my family believe that I was in love with this captor and wanted to stay with him,” she told ABC News in 2016. “I mean, that is so far from the truth that it makes me want to throw up. It’s disgusting. I adapted to survive my circumstances. There’s just no other way to put it.”

“He was always my captor. I never forgot that. Never,” she told the outlet. 

2. Where are Phillip and Nancy Garrido now?

Philip and Nancy Garrido pleaded guilty in April 2011 to kidnapping, sexual assault, false imprisonment, lewd conduct with a minor and child pornography. They are currently serving out their prison sentences. 

Phillip received a term of 431 years, according to the New York Times. It is unknown where Phillip is currently living out his sentence. 

His wife, Nancy, was sentenced to 36 years to life in prison, according to the source. She is serving her time at the California Institution for Women in Chino, California, and is eligible for parole in 2029. 


3. Did Jaycee Dugard keep her daughters?

Dugard kept custody of her two daughters that she had while in captivity after being raped by Phillip. 

Her first was born in 1994, when she was 14. She then gave birth to a second daughter in 1997, when she was 17. 

“That’s the last time he had sex with me, was when she was conceived,” Dugard said in her testimony, per the New York Times. 

Jaycee had previously stated that both of her daughters were attending college, but much about the entire family is kept private. In her book titled “Freedom: My Book of Firsts”, she expressed pride for her daughters and who they have grown up to be. However, she keeps her sharing to a minimum.


4. What is Jaycee Dugard doing now?

Today, Dugard lives a private life with her daughters. 

Even though she and her family remain out of the public eye, she did release a book detailing her story in 2011 called “A Stolen Life.”

In 2016, Dugard released “Freedom: My Book of Firsts.”

Jaycee Dugard with Oprah Winfrey

Today, Jaycee Dugard is a two-time published author and the founder of The JAYC Foundation. (Charles Eshelman/FilmMagic)

Dugard is also the founder and president of The JAYC Foundation. Dugard was inspired to begin this organization after the traumatic experience she endured. 


The mission of the organization is “to be of service to families and individuals that have experienced a severe crisis, challenge or conflict through a major life disruption; to spread the message of hope, growth and resiliency through educational and animal-assisted programs; to encourage the collaboration of various entities to provide “Protected Spaces” for families to heal, according to its website. 

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