Jaycee Dugar, who was held captive for nearly 20 years by a convicted rapist, and the daughters she bore during that imprisonment have been awarded $20 million by the state of California for the system failing to monitor her captor and not rescuing her.
“It is compensation for three people for the rest of their lives who have been horribly damaged over a period of 17 or 18 years,” mediator Daniel Weinstein told The Associated Press.
The state began supervising Phillip Garrido, Dugard’s kidnapper, in 1999 but failed to discover her. The Dugard family members claimed psychological, physical and emotional damages.
“I can’t emphasize enough that we’ve got to be much more prudent in terms of how we provide oversight for released prisoners in the state of California,” Assemblyman Ted Gaines said.
The money will be used to buy Dugard and her daughters a home, ensure their privacy, pay for education and cover what will likely be years of therapy, said Weinstein, a retired San Francisco County Superior Court judge. In addition, a portion of the money will be placed in long-term investments, he said.
“It was not an effort to make reparations for the years of abuse and incarceration or imprisonment against their will, because … the damages to these people were incalculable,” Weinstein said in a telephone interview. “Part of this was a prudent effort by the state to shut off liability from a catastrophic verdict.”