Garrido DA: Jaycee's Family Doing "Exceptionally Well" - NBC Bay Area

Garrido DA: Jaycee's Family Doing "Exceptionally Well"

Bail set at $30 million for Garrido



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    This family photo released by Carl Probyn on Thursday, Aug. 27, shows his stepdaughter, Jaycee Lee Dugard who went missing in 1991.

    Phillip and Nancy Garrido made a quick court appearance Monday where a judge set the couple's bail, but the headline of the day came in a news conference following the hearing. The Garridos are charged with kidnapping Jaycee Dugard from South Lake Tahoe in 1991.

    The district attorney said Dugard and her two children, who authorities say were fathered by Garrido, are "doing exceptionally well" and he asked the media to leave the family alone.   There is talk that the family has agreed to an interview with Oprah Winfrey.  When asked to varify that, the district attorney refused.

    In court, the judge set Phillip Garrido's bail at $30 million. There is no bail for his wife because her attorney chose not to ask for bail.  El Dorado County Superior Court Judge Douglas Phimister set the high amount Monday, citing the serious nature of the charges, injuries to the victim and the fact that Garrido was on parole at the time of the alleged crime.

    Phillip Garrido, who wore a bandage on his nose in the place that had a red blemish the last time he was in court, showed no emotion, reporters said.  Nancy appeared to try to hide behind her hair.  Nancy sat in front of her husband and two never exchanged even one look.

    RAW: District Attorney Vern Pierson

    [BAY] RAW: District Attorney Vern Pierson
    Outside court, District Attorney Vern Pierson speaks to reporters.
    (Published Monday, Sept. 14, 2009)

    The Placerville court parking lot was nearly full before sunrise as media from across the country and around the world turned out for the hearing.

    The judge has ordered a gag order in the case, so prosecutors said they could not comment on specifics.  He said the investigation into the original kidnapping will continue even though the prosecution has begun.    He also credited the action of parole agent Eddy Santos who he said broke through a "well planned cover story."   The agent brought in Garrido for routine questioning after he attempted to get a permit to hand out fliers at UC Berkeley.  During that interview, Santos figured out the woman with Garrido was the kidnapped child-now adult Jaycee Dugard.

    Phillip Garrido knows the inside walls of a jail cell well.

    RAW: Phillip and Nancy Garrido In Court

    [BAY] RAW: Phillip and Nancy Garrido In Court
    A judge on Monday set bail at $30 million for a Northern California man accused of kidnapping a girl and holding her captive for 18 years.
    (Published Monday, Sept. 14, 2009)

    Three decades ago, the convicted kidnapper stunned a Leavenworth Prison psychologist by turning down an offer most prisoners would leap to take -- help with a transfer to a mental health facility.

    Instead, Garrido opted to spend at least three more years doing hard time so he could complete his religious studies.

    Along his twisted trail of drugs and sexual violence, records and interviews show that Garrido invoked God at every turn before he was arrested Aug. 26 and accused of kidnapping, raping and imprisoning Jaycee Dugard for 18 years in a backyard compound.

    Again and again, he claimed that he had found God: to a woman he had abducted and was about to rape; to the judge who sentenced him to 50 years behind bars for the crime; and later, to business clients and neighbors in Antioch, Calif.

    In the end, his increasingly bizarre religious fervor took on a desperate, prophetic quality and led to his capture after he tried to hold a rally on a college campus.

    Molesters commonly turn to religion to rationalize their behavior, said Ken Lanning, a former FBI profiler who specializes in kidnapping and child abuse cases.

    "A lot of them when they're molesting children put a lot of time and energy into trying to convince themselves that they're not bad people," Lanning said. "In some cases, the element of religion will come into it, and they will use varying aspects of their religious belief to justify all of this."

    The 58-year-old Garrido's preoccupation with religion started shortly after he began taking large quantities of LSD, cocaine and other drugs in the early 1970s, family members have said.