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Jaycee Dugard Update: Garridos Indicted on 18 Counts Including Rape, Kidnapping, and Child Pornography

Jaycee Dugard (AP Photo, file)
Jaycee Dugard Update: Garridos Indicted on 18 Counts from Rape to Kidnapping
Jaycee Dugard (AP Photo, file)

PLACERVILLE, Calif. (CBS/AP) A grand jury has indicted Philip and Nancy Garrido, the couple accused of kidnapping and raping Jaycee Dugard, sparing the woman who was held captive for 18 years in Northern California from having to testify in open court for the time being, said a prosecutor Friday.

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El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson said outside court that the indictment was sought to protect Dugard's privacy and to spare her and her family from having to take the witness stand until the trial.

Using a grand jury also prevented much of the evidence from becoming public.

"It's a better way to get a case to a final conclusion and move it along to trial" when it has attracted a lot of publicity, Pierson said.

The indictment was issued Sept. 21, but was kept confidential until Friday when Superior Court Judge Douglas Phimister sealed the transcripts of the proceedings.

Although Person would not disclose whether Dugard testified in front of the grand jury, Nancy Garrido's attorney, Stephen Tapson,  said outside court that he heard from a juror that Dugard spent a full day before the panel and that her testimony brought many in attendance to tears.

The Garridos were each indicted on 18 counts plus multiple special allegations.

The Garridos had originally been charged with 29 counts each, but the indictment supersedes those charges. The revised charges include kidnapping, forcible rape, lewd acts on a child and false imprisonment. The indictment also alleges Phillip Garrido videotaped sex acts involving himself and his wife with the victim. Both defendants were charged with possession of child pornography.

Nancy Garrido pleaded not guilty to the charges, but the court has said it will wait for a mental competency evaluation for Philip Garrido before accepting his plea. Prosecutors asked the judge to enter a not guilty plea on Philip Garrido's behalf in order to prevent an untimely arraignment that might hurt the trial later, but the judge refused their request.

Philip Garrido was convicted of a 1977 rape and kidnapping and made to register as a sex offender, and despite being visited regularly by parole officers he was able to keep Dugard and her children a secret for nearly 20 years. His 1977 victim attended the hearing and expressed concern about the chance of him escaping justice because of mental competency claims.

"He shows extreme competence in his ability to make a lot of people believe exactly what he wants them to believe," Katie Callaway Hall said. "He was able to hide three people, their very existence, for 18 years."

Dugard, now 30, is writing a memoir for Simon & Schuster. The publisher says the book will cover her life from the abduction to how she is doing now.

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