Kidnapping victim recounts experience

April 30, 2009 at 7:51 PM
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SALT LAKE CITY, April 30 (UPI) -- Elizabeth Smart said Thursday when she was kidnapped seven years ago from her Salt Lake City home it marked a defining moment in her life.

Speaking to the 22nd Annual Crime Victims' Conference, Smart said "victims" should instead be called "survivors," the Salt Lake Tribune reported Thursday.

Smart, 21, is a music student at Brigham Young University. She told conference attendees she was awakened by "something cold and sharp" against her neck in the early hours of June 5, 2002. Smart said she tried to reason with her captor, telling him that when he was caught, he would be thrown in prison -- but if he let her go she would say something on his behalf.

Smart said she came to believe, "I'm going to be raped and he's going to kill me and five years from now they'll find my remains in a ditch ... ."

Smart was found alive in March 2003 after nine months in captivity. Police arrested Brian David Mitchell, a homeless religious fanatic who wanted Smart for a plural wife, and his wife, Wanda Eileen Barzee, in connection with the kidnapping.

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