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Assembly approves $20-million settlement with kidnapping victim Jaycee Dugard [Updated]

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-kidnapping-pictures,0,5826179.photogalleryThe state Assembly Thursday approved a $20-million settlement for Jaycee Dugard, who was kidnapped and held captive for 18 years.

State justice officials have recommended paying the settlement, which still must be approved by the state Senate.

Phillip Garrido is accused of snatching Dugard when she was 11 from outside her South Lake Tahoe home. Since his arrest, officials have revealed he was being monitored by the state parole system for years and had at least five parole officers.

Some have questioned why none of the parole officers discovered the backyard prison where Garrido allegedly kept Dugard at his home in Antioch, Calif.

Garrido is charged with kidnapping Dugard outside her South Lake Tahoe, Calif., home in 1991. She resurfaced in August 2009, along with two daughters allegedly fathered by Garrido.

[Updated at 10:30 a.m.: Dugard and her two daughters had filed claims with the California Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board.

They accused the state of negligence, failure to discharge a mandatory duty and infliction of emotional distress, according to a legislative analysis. The $20-million settlement "would end any claims with the state," said Assemblyman Felipe Fuentes (D- Sylmar), the author of the bill, AB 1714.

The payment was recommended by the state Department of Justice and approved by the governor’s budget office. The bill analysis noted that while the state Corrections Department denies the allegations and typically has legal immunity from such claims, the Dugard case “had a unique and tragic character,” including “missed opportunities to identify Mrs. Dugard” during her captivity.

State attorneys had warned that damage awards by a jury could be “extremely high,” according to the analysis. “It is virtual certainty Mrs. Dugard and daughters will require counseling for rest of lives,” the analysis says. “Ms. Dugard’s daughters have received no formal education and neither is equipped to handle the academic or social challenges that school – and society -- will pose, nor has Mrs. Dugard received any education since her abduction."

[Correction posted at 11:37 a.m.: In an earlier version of this post, the word "require" was mistakenly rendered as "acquire" in this quote: “It is virtual certainty Mrs. Dugard and daughters will require counseling for rest of lives.”]

-- Shane Goldmacher

Photo: Photo of Jaycee Dugard before her kidnapping. Credit: Family handout

Photos: Kidnapping victim found after 18 years

 
Comments () | Archives (60)

20 million should help!

$20 million payout and no one from the State Parole System was ever fired.


20 million is not too high--but if half of it goes to her attorneys, she should have been awarded 40 mil.

Settle for 20 million, that's insane. i feel for the Dugards but because some wack job kidnapped her the tax payers shouldn't have to pay. THis is ridicules.

I think that this money should come out of the pockets (salary or pension) of the people who caused the "negligence, (and) failure to discharge a mandatory duty." Especially the five or more parole officers who failed to discover what was happening in that Antioch, Calif back yard and officials at the state parole system under who's watch this miscarriage of justice occurred.

"The bill analysis noted that while the state Corrections Department denies the allegations and typically has legal immunity from such claims, the Dugard case “had a unique and tragic character,” including “missed opportunities to identify Mrs. Dugard” during her captivity. "


MRS. Dugard?

Wrong! Jaycee never married the man who kidnapped her.

This is a terribly tragic situation. Garrido should already have been executed, and yes, Jaycee deserves and needs considerable compensation.

But, is providing $20 million to her the right solution? Will she have a trustee or guardian - someone really competent - to handle her finances?

And, what about the parole officers and others who failed to notice her plight or, if they suspected anything, failed to follow up on it? Why should they be allowed to continue their jobs or lose no compensation themselves?

The departments and/or agencies for which they work should have their budgets cut over time to help pay for whatever compensation Jaycee will get.

It's deplorable what happened to this woman...BUT...$20million payoff from the taxpayers...you've got to be kidding!

No wonder this State is so far in the financial hole with decisions like this!

The powers that be in Sacramento have now opened up a floodgate of claims....what about foster children...children involved in custody battles that are put in dangerous and at times life ending situations by our judges or social agencies? With this decision, you can be assured that we will be hearing more and more of these claims.

$20 million is not enough! If the state of California cuts her a check for that amount in one year, then the Government will take 75% in taxes. That means she only gets to keep $5 million after all is said and done.

This is great. Now she must definitely go out and find a really good estate planning attorney and prepare a will and trust so that no unsavory people like Phil Garrido or Kenneth (I don't want anything from her but I am going to sue her) Slayton and his brood cannot get their hands on any of those funds.

Why are we, the tax payers, on the hook for this. If it was the fault of the parole dept or the officers for missing it, then sue their worthless ass as individuals. this is rediculous...

It's not enough.

Mr. Garrido must deserve most cruel and unusual punishment, but alas, our Constitution does not permit that. I'd say the State is getting off cheap. It's not money that the victims need, but love and care and there is no way our society can provide those, so they get the money. But would they know what to do with it? And wouldn't it put them in more danger? I shudder to think how they must feel any time they see another human being. They can't trust anyone in the world, and if they ever do, that person would need super human strength of character to maintain that trust.

I think that Jaycee Dugard suffered a lot but I think $20 million is a bit much for the state to pay out during times of fiscal instability. Her captors should be held financially responsible. Wrongly convicted prisoners don't get $20 million.

I think that Jaycee Dugard suffered a lot but I think $20 million is a bit much for the state to pay out during times of fiscal instability. Her captors should be held financially responsible. Wrongly convicted prisoners don't get $20 million.

Is it not strange how time and again real life trumps anything Hollywood could have invented? We now must 'expect' the depravity and monstrous behavior of man. Let this be a rather 'cheap', well heard, lesson learned by Departments of Justice EVERYWHERE. God bless you Jaycee, I hope you can peacefully live the rest of your life.

This is ridiculous! Jaycee had ample opportunity to at least cry for help when she was in public with her captors, if not escape. She had Stockholm Syndrome and that was the real cause of her lengthy stay. While the parole agents may have made mistakes too, 18 years of captivity is nowhere near proximate cause of any potential negligence on their part.

Even if it somehow was, where did $20 million come from?? This arbitrary number needs to also be ridiculed. For example, James Bain was in prison for 35 years and received only $1.75 million after being proven innocent. Although I think he deserves much more than that, it just shows how unfair this compensation is.

Are we citizens of CA ready to weed out the P.C. bureaucrats yet and replace them with ones that are in touch with reality? I know my threshold for this nonsense has been greatly surpassed, has yours? Get rid of Assemblyman Felipe Fuentes (D), author of this bill, and all others who support similar bills of this extreme nature.

With the State of California in a financial crisis, how taxpayers can afford to pay out a settlement of $20 million? How much of the $20 million will go to her lawyers? Are provisions in place to prevent the $20 million from being squandered in a short period of time considering the limited education the people who would get the money have?

Mrs. Dugard? Jaycee was never married. Mrs. Dugard is Jaycee's mother!
Some of this money should come out of those responsible parole officers' pockets.

Great. Another $20 million that we don't have. I'm sure they'll cut back on parole officers so they can pay the settlement. We've dug the hole, now we're throwing dirt on ourselves.

I feel the compensation is just for Jaycee. Having said that, I feel that if it had been a black woman, she would have recieve nothing or may be less than 1/100th of what jaycee would be receiving. We saw so many innocent black men freed from prisons after 15,20,25 years and they recieved total compensation that equalled the minimum wage they would have earned in that whole period. US Justice system will never be color blind.

I am pleased to see a quick resolution for Jaycee Dugard and her daughters in this matter. After all those years of captivity, they shouldn't have to deal w/the courts endlessly on this matter. One obstacle overcome early so that they may continue their forward progression/healing in the real world. There's really no congratulations to be offered because of the circumstances leading to this settlement, but I'm happy for them, nontheless. I wish them continued success and happiness in their lives forward. And I continually think of her Mother's joy, and wish her congratulations at having her daughter back.

The girl should get the money but California state workers how much more do we have to put up with. 20 million dollar mistake and no one is fired?

Her childhood was stolen. 20 million or 100 million cannot bring that back. It is not her fault. Easy to say she should have screamed for help but she was terrified. How lazy were these parole officers? Out of the years the kidnapper was being monitored not one of them stepped into the backyard. That is the real tragedy-the parole officers laziness. Imagine how many other missing children are possibly in someone's backyard? Give her the dough and treatment-she deserves it.


I mean, I feel bad for the women, but why is it the tazpayers responsibility to pay for this crime?

 
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