Produced in Utah in 1987, the harrowing ordeal and remarkable bravery of Elizabeth Smart acquired her national recognition in 2003. Smart, who was 14 at that time, was saved together with the aid of an America’s Most Wanted episode after being kidnapped and held prisoner for nine months.
Her mom is a homemaker and her dad is an extremely successful property developer. As a kid, Smart was known as a type, intelligent, timid and obedient kid. Her greatest passion was the harp, which she started playing in the age of 5 and practiced for hours every day. Smart was also a proficient equestrienne and distance runner who was training to compete in cross country racing when she reached high school.
A guy whispered, “I ‘ve a knife to your own neck. Do not make a sound. Get out of bed and come with me, or I’ll kill you as well as your loved ones.” The kidnapper, a guy by the name of Brian Mitchell, directed Smart from the home and marched her for hours throughout the woods into a camp where his wife, Wanda Barzee, was waiting.
“I attempted to fight him off me,” she later testified. “A 14-year old girl against a grown man does not even outside so much.” Mitchell and Barzee held Smart prisoner for another nine months as they moved between California and Utah. Mitchell raped Smart day-to-day sometimes multiple times per day and often kept her tethered to a tree. He pushed her to have vast amounts of booze, cannabis along with other substances and frequently failed to feed her for days bringing Smart to the point of starvation. Every one of the while, Mitchell tried to indoctrinate Smart in his weird religious beliefs and convince her that he was a prophet.
The nighttime of Smart’s kidnapping, her younger sister Mary Katherine had feigned to be asleep in another bed while quietly trying to find her sister’s kidnapper in the dark. “I remained in bed,” she remembered. “I was frightened. I could not do anything. I used to be simply shocked, petrified. I did not understand what to do, understanding someone had come into my bedroom and taken my sister.” After several months, it suddenly happened to Mary Katherine the kidnapper resembled a guy who’d once worked on their house as a handyman and who’d called himself Immanuel. Authorities found that Immanuel was a guy named Brian David Mitchell, as well as in February 2003 America’s Most Wanted aired his picture. Eventually, on March 12, 2003, a passerby understood Mitchell walking with Smart who was veiled and wearing a wig and shades.
Unexpectedly, Smart managed to go back to some somewhat ordinary life right after rejoining her family. “I felt fantastic. I felt victorious,” she said. “Itis a great increase anyways.” Smart included, “I do not believe it is worth spending time in the past. It is not something I think about. If I feel like I need to [retell my story to someone], I ‘ll. But I do not have to. I do not talk about it much, I actually do not care to.” After five months, she returned to school and restarted playing the harp and riding horses. He’s not yet been sentenced but will probably receive lifetime imprisonment.
In 2008, Smart registered at Brigham Young University to study music performance. She took time off in 2009 to take her Mormon missionary visit to France, as well as in the summers she functions as a bank clerk. She’s, by all reports, an average college student. She also speaks out as an activist for kidnapping survivors and child victims of violence and sexual abuse. Smart says that her kidnapping helped her understand the depth of her love for her relatives and buddies as well as figure out how to take delight in the gift of life. “I have just one life, and I am not likely to pass up on it,” she said. “When I am through, I am interested in being in a position to express, ‘Wow, I lived an excellent life.'”
In October of 2013, Smart released a memoir entitled My Story, emphasizing the terrible ordeals that she fell upon while she was kidnapped. Although the narrative does detail the inhumane treatment that she received from her captors, Smart composed the novel as a kind of closing. “I need visitors to understand that I am happy in my own entire life right now,” she said to the Associated Press.