Horse therapy essential part of Dugard's healing - report

July 15, 2011

Jaycee Dugard, kidnapped at age 11 and held captive for the next 18 years in California, has benefited greatly from horse therapy, it has been revealed.

Jaycee Dugard's missing person photo
Broadcaster ABC said millions of viewers watched Diane Sawyer's landmark interview with Dugard, who was snatched on her way to school.

In the ordeal that followed, she was repeatedly abused and gave birth to two daughters.

"Many of those viewers filled the ABC News message boards with remarks about her survival and resilience," an ABC spokesman said.

"Now, Chris Cuomo takes a closer look at Dugard's healing process, which includes a special horse therapy that has been an essential part of her treatment."

The "20/20" programme airs in the US on Friday, July 15 (10-11pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network.

Dugard was kidnapped on June 10 from a school bus stop near her home in South Lake Tahoe, California.

Searches began immediately after the kidnapping, but no reliable leads were uncovered. She was missing for more than 18 years.

Phillip Garrido

Nancy Garrido
In August, 2009, convicted sex offender Phillip Craig Garrido visited the campus of UC Berkeley accompanied by two young girls.

Their unusual behaviour sparked an investigation that led to his bringing the two girls to a parole office on August 26, accompanied by a woman then identified as Dugard.

Garrido, 58, and his wife Nancy Garrido, 54, of Antioch, California, were arrested for kidnapping and other charges; they pleaded guilty on April 28, 2011 to Dugard's kidnapping and sexual assault.

Law enforcement officers believe Dugard was kept in a concealed area behind Garrido's house. During this time Dugard bore two daughters who were aged 11 and 15 at the time of her reappearance.

On June 2, 2011, Philip Garrido was sentenced to 431 years' imprisonment; his wife received 36 years to life.