Kidnapping Solved: 18 Years Later

August 27, 2009 8:02:57 PM PDT
A sex offender admitted to authorities Thursday that he abducted an 11-year-old girl who has been missing from South Lake Tahoe since 1991. Phillip Garrido and his wife Nancy are both in custody Thursday night. And now, after all these years, the mystery about what happened to Jaycee Lee Dugard may finally be solved.

Just moments ago, El Dorado County Investigators explained how the suspected kidnappers hid the victim for nearly two decades.

Action News Reporter Nannette Miranda has more on the kidnapping, and the discovery of the victim.

The case broke a couple of days ago when suspect Phillip Garrido, a registered sex offender, was spotted with two small children at U.C. Berkeley.

His parole agent then brought Garrido in for questioning Wednesday.

Two women, Garrido's wife and Jaycee Lee Dugard, accompanied him. The California Corrections Department says the 58-year-old admitted one the women was the girl he had kidnapped as a child 18 years ago in South Lake Tahoe and that the two kids were his and the now grown-woman, Jaycee's.

Thursday, numerous law enforcement officials, including the agents from the FBI, spent hours searching Garrido's Bay Area home in Antioch.

The surprise break in the case brought relief from Jaycee's step-father in Orange County, who was stunned with the news told, he found out through Jaycee's mother, from whom he is separated.

Carl Probyn, Jaycee's Step-Father: "Just total shock. After 18 years, you know. My wife called and said, 'are you sitting down?' I said, 'yeah.' 'They found Jaycee.' She paused for 10 seconds and she goes, 'She's alive.' And we both cried for about 10 minutes."

It was Probyn who witnessed Jaycee's kidnapping in 1991 when people in a gray sedan plucked her on her way to school not far from her home.

Probyn said: "They basically cut her off and pulled her in and I jumped on my mountain bike, but I couldn't catch them. My energy was gone after seeing what happened. And now to get her back alive, it's like winning the Lotto. We get her back alive and she sounds like she's okay."

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