Elizabeth Smart’s abduction from her family’s house in Salt Lake City in 2002, was the beginning of a heart wrenching nine month trial for the young 14-year-old.
Mary Katherine, Smart’s sister, witnessed while pretending to be asleep, an odd man wandering in their room. He was holding a knife and guiding Elizabeth out of their house, whereas Many months later, Mary Katherine would recall the strange man had done unusual jobs on the family’s property.
The later identified man as Brian David Mitchell took Elizabeth to a camp in the mountains. He lived there with his wife Wanda Eileen Barzee. Elizabeth was held captive and continuously mistreated(to say the least) for nine months by Mitchell. In the meantime, her kidnapping case attracted national attention.
She managed to survive by pure luck. America’s Most Wanted TV show featured her story on the hit, and a cyclist recognized her and Mitchell from a recent episode. Ever since, her story has been shown in movies, books, and Tv documentaries.
Smart is now telling her story to warn parents and help them keep their children safe.
Lately, she shared three things all parents must tell their children…
Even since her kidnapping, Smart has lived a happy life.
She has two children and works as a child safety advocate who often assists ABC News. She has been able to use her horrible experience to help kids be secure and shared fundamental advice for other parents.
Even though it happened 15 years ago, there’s still considerable interest in her case. A new movie based on her kidnapping and also a new documentary about Smart’s life have been released.
She held an Ask Me Anything (AMA) event on Reddit to help promote the documentary.
One of the users asked her an important question:
“As a children’s advocate, what are some realistic, practical steps parents might take to help their children avoid abuse! (And by that I mean abuse in general, from extreme bullying to abduction)
She answered must tell with 3 things all their children:
1. Be sure your kid knows they are loved unconditionally, and be sure they know what unconditionally stands for.
2. You must have your child know that no one owns the right to hurt or frighten them in any way.
Be it a family member, friend, religious leader, community leader.
3. Your kids need to tell you in case anyone hurts or threatens them in any way.
Please share her valuable advice with all parents, you might save a life!