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Elizabeth Smart to speak during Brian David Mitchell sentencing

Elizabeth Smart arrives at the federal court house for the closing arguments in the trial of Brian David Mitchell Thursday, Dec. 9, 2010 in Salt Lake City. AP Photo/Colin E Braley

Elizabeth Smart wants to make sentencing message of hope
Elizabeth Smart
AP/Colin E Braley

(CBS/KUTV/AP) SALT LAKE CITY - Elizabeth Smart is home enjoying her time with her family after returning from a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints mission in France.

Pictures: Elizabeth Smart

But on May 25, she'll be back in the public eye as she plans to speak during the sentencing hearing for her kidnapper Brian David Mitchell.

Mitchell was convicted of federal kidnapping and unlawful transportation charges in December and faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. He kidnapped then 14-year-old Smart from her home at knifepoint in 2002, raped her and held her captive for nine months.

Smart says her goal is to not only speak for her case, but also for other victims.

"I hope it gives others hope that they can speak out and not be scared to face their captor," Smart said according to CBS affiliate KUTV.

Once the sentencing hearing is over, Smart hopes to continue work as an advocate for children and victims of crime, especially kidnapping. She has started the Elizabeth Smart Foundation and her first goal is to get the RADkids program in public schools. RAD, which stands for "Resist Aggression Defensively," teaches kids specific techniques to get away from would-be attackers.

Smart will complete two more semesters at Brigham Young University before graduating with a degree in music.

She said she admired the work of attorneys during the trial and is thinking about possibly pursuing a career as an attorney to help crime victims further.

Complete coverage of Elizabeth Smart on Crimesider

  • Edecio Martinez

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