Schwarzenegger backs $20-million settlement for Jaycee Dugard
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said he was sign a $20-million settlement to kidnapping victim Jaycee Dugard if it reaches his desk, the governor's spokesman said Thursday.
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.
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 the rest of their 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."
The state Assembly Thursday approved a $20-million settlement.
Read more on the Dugard settlement here.
-- Shane Goldmacher in Sacramento
Photo: An El Dorado County sheriff's deputy holds a photo of Jaycee Lee Dugard during a search for her shortly after she was kidnapped in 1991. Credit: Associated Press