There is more information being released about Jaycee Dugard and all that she's endured at the hands of Phillip Garrido and his wife, Nancy Garrido.
This whole story/situation has sickened me and made me beyond angry. Phillip Garrido should still be serving time for a previous kidnapping and rape charge (50 years to life for rape and a life sentence for kidnapping!). Katie Callaway Hall's story was just the beginning for Garrido. And his very short 11 years spent in prison only served to help him figure out what he was going to do when he was released and how to avoid getting caught. You can watch Hall's story here...Phillip Garrido's Past Victim Speaks
I would like to encourage you to go to this website and see where the registered sex offenders are in regards to where you live and where your children go to school. Get familiar with their faces and their names. I'm not asking you to do anything or say anything to these people but just that you be aware of who is around you. Know your neighborhood and who belongs there and who doesn't. We can't always be with our children, nor can we protect them from everything wrong in this world, but we can be proactive and do some research on our surroundings. I have no idea whether this will protect you and your family from ever having an encounter with a registered sex offender but I'm of the belief that it couldn't hurt.
In the meantime, teach your child basic safety measures. Let them know that they should never keep secrets from you. And, it's okay for them to "tattle" on an adult. Give them permission to say "NO" when they feel uncomfortable around another adult and never push them to give so-and-so a hug (that can be a confusing message to a child when you're asking them to hug someone they've never met, even if it is family). Also, teach your child what a "stranger" means (someone that Mommy and Daddy do not know) and to never leave with one no matter what they may tell your child. Make sure your child knows your phone number and address (we're working on that right now with Violet). And teach your child what to do in the event they get separated from you (we've taught Violet to seek out another Mommy who has kids with her or someone at a counter if you're at the store). These are just a few safety measures that I'm offering you. I'm sure there are others. If you're teaching your children something that I've not mentioned I would love to hear it.
Childhood is a time of innocence and I want to protect Violet's for as long as possible. We try to walk the fine line of teaching her the basic safety precautions while preparing her for the worst case scenario. I pray she never has to put any of these techniques to use but I also don't want to leave it to chance that she won't.