Elizabeth Smart Takes the Stand

Kidnap victim Elizabeth Smart took the stand Monday in the case of her alleged abductor, Brian David Mitchell, saying he abducted her at knifepoint and repeatedly raped her. Smart, who was kidnapped from her bedroom in 2002 when she was 14, made national headlines when she was found nine months later walking the streets of a suburb of Salt Lake City, where she grew up. Mitchell, a fundamentalist Mormon, forced Smart to “marry” him and “sealed” her to him in a ceremony. Afterward, he allegedly raped her repeatedly over the course of the next nine months. “It was an indescribable fear,” said Smart, now 23 and a college student. Smart’s mother Lois testified earlier Monday that she thought that Mitchell looked like a “well-kept man that was down on his luck” when she hired him a few days prior to the kidnapping to do work around the house. Mitchell’s wife, Wanda Barzee, pleaded guilty in November 2009 to kidnapping and unlawful transportation of a minor, and was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison in May. As part of her sentence, she agreed to cooperate in the case against Mitchell.