Elizabeth Smart Joins ABC, Should Counterbalance the Nancy Grace Effect

elizabeth smart, casey anthony
Elizabeth Smart joins ABC News staff.

The Hollywood Reporter just announced that ABC News has hired kidnapping victim Elizabeth Smart as a contributor.  Smart “will comment on missing persons cases and could debut on the network in the next couple weeks.”  According to THR, Smart “has become an advocate for tougher missing persons legislation” and “will be focused on looking ahead, not looking back at her own story.”

Indeed, Smart has made it clear on multiple occasions that she doesn’t wish to rehash the horrid details of her 2002 abduction and subsequent 9-month captivity.  Smart should serve as a calm, collected antidote to pundits like Nancy Grace, who has been criticized for her coverage of the Casey Anthony trial.  When Smart appeared on Grace’s HLN show in 2006 to support Sexual Predator Legislation and the AMBER Alert system, Grace pushed Smart to talk about how she felt while in the hands of her captors, and Smart politely but pointedly refused in what many have described as a “smackdown.”  Their interview footage reveals what will surely be clear differences in style between the two crime commentators.  Take a look:

According to The Hollywood Reporter:

[ABC] has been in discussions with Smart for some time…. she will not appear in ABC News’ two-hour special about another famous kidnap victim: Jaycee Dugard.  Dugard was kidnapped in California in 1991.  She was held hostage for 18 years and bore two children by her kidnapper.  Dugard’s interview with Diane Sawyer will air Sunday.  It is timed to the release of Dugard’s memoir, A Stolen Life, from Simon & Schuster, which is a division of CBS Corp.

Photo and source: The Hollywood Reporter

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