Thursday, September 22, 2011

Jaycee Dugard sues US over failure to monitor abductor

Jaycee Dugard sues US over failure to monitor abductor
Electronic monitoring of Garrido was considered 'too much of a hassle,' complaint says

Jaycee Dugard sued the federal government Thursday for failing to monitor the convicted sex offender who kidnapped her and held her captive for 18 years.

The complaint filed in U.S. District Court in San Francisco said the mistakes by federal parole officers in the handling of Phillip Garrido's case are as "outrageous and inexcusable as they are numerous."

Had federal parole officers done their jobs, Dugard's lawyers allege, Dugard and her daughters would not have had to endure their years of captivity in a ramshackle compound tucked inside Garrido's Antioch backyard.

Garrido, who was convicted in 1977 of raping and kidnapping a 25-year-old woman, was on parole and under federal supervision when he kidnapped Dugard in 1991. He fathered Dugard's two children while he and his wife, Nancy, held her captive. The pair was been sentenced to prison after pleading guilty to kidnapping and rape charges in the case.

The complaint alleges that the federal government's negligence allowed Garrido to be free to kidnap Dugard. The complaint said federal authorities were aware he was still dangerous yet failed to revoke his parole and send him back to prison....

It says Garrido tested positive for drugs and alcohol while on parole, a violation for a sex offender, but was never punished. It also says authorities ignored reports of sexual misconduct, including a complaint that Garrido showed up at his former victim's work and made an "alarming" comment to her.

"Inexplicably, the federal parole authorities responsible for Garrido's direct supervision disregarded the victim's concerns as mere hysteria," the documents say.

After the incident, Garrido's counselor recommended electronic monitoring, but his parole officer disregarded it as "too much of a hassle," according to the complaint.

The documents also allege federal parole officers did not follow up on a sexual harassment complaint by one of Garrido's co-workers....

She and her daughters already have received a $20 million settlement from the state of California for the failings of its law enforcement. The state took over Garrido's parole supervision in 1999.

Dugard, who was kidnapped when she was 11 years old, was reunited with her family in August 2009.

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