The lawyer for a US woman found alive 18 years after she was kidnapped said his client initially had mixed emotions surrounding the arrest of her alleged captors but now “fully understands that some terrible things were done to her”.
Jaycee Dugard was 11 when police say Phillip and Nancy Garrido kidnapped her and held her captive.
Police allege the couple raped Ms Dugard, now 29, and Phillip Garrido fathered her two daughters. The Garridos have pleaded not guilty.
Lawyer McGregor Scott, a former US attorney in Northern California who is representing Ms Dugard and her family for free, said Ms Dugard will testify against the Garridos if the time comes.
“She fully understands that if there is a trial, she will be a witness, and she fully understands that some terrible things were done to her and the people who did those things need to be held accountable, which is why she is fully cooperating with law enforcement and prosecutors,” Mr Scott said.
For now, Ms Dugard and her daughters, 11 and 15, are getting psychological help, receiving medical and dental care and working on basic things such as getting birth certificates for the girls.
They have expressed a desire to remain within what Ms Dugard’s mother, Terry Probyn, has described as a zone of privacy and security.
“The law enforcement folks have been treating her and her daughters with the utmost decorum and respect, and have done a very nice job of balancing the demands of their investigation with Jaycee’s need and the girls’ need for space and privacy,” Mr Scott said.
Mr Scott would not comment on what Ms Dugard has told him or investigators about the years after her kidnapping and her relationship with the Garridos.
He also would not disclose where her family is living nor how their daily expenses are being met, although he said a trust fund set up to collect donations has raised a significant amount of money that may give them a financial cushion.
Ms Probyn has said the family is doing very well under the circumstances. They were reunited on August 27.
Ms Probyn hopes her family’s story will focus attention on all missing children and give hope to parents that their children could still be alive years after their abductions.
The statement from Ms Probyn came after a 63-year-old man who claims he is Ms Dugard’s biological father asked for a private meeting with Ms Dugard.
Ken Slayton was accompanied by attorney Gloria Allred, who said Mr Slayton wants to arrange a meeting with Ms Dugard and a confidential paternity test.
“He wants nothing from her,” Ms Allred said. “What they really want to do is love her.”
Ms Allred said Ms Probyn and Mr Slayton had dated for about a month in 1979 when Ms Probyn became pregnant. Ms Probyn never told him she had the baby, Ms Allred said.
A spokeswoman for the Ms Dugard family said they have not been contacted by Mr Slayton since Ms Dugard was found.
“This all comes as a big surprise,” spokeswoman Erika Schulte told The Los Angeles Times.