Feeling better. Elizabeth Smart’s father, Ed Smart, revealed his daughter is no longer scared after her kidnapper Wanda Barzee was released early from federal prison. “The feds have been very respective of [Elizabeth],” Ed, 64, told Radar on Friday, August 16. “We know that Wanda is on an ankle bracelet, so she’s not going to be able to cause trouble or problems.”
Ed continued to explain that despite the 31-year-old’s traumatic experience, she understands that Wanda is a free woman. “I know Elizabeth feels very comfortable with how things are considering that initially we were told she wouldn’t be out until 2024, and then two months later, she’s being released,” he said. “That was a little adjustment, but everything is good.”
After spending 15 years behind bars, Wanda, 73, — who is now living at a halfway house just two blocks away from an elementary school — was allowed to leave prison in September 2018 after she completed her sentence for helping her husband, Brian David Mitchell, in abducting and holding Elizabeth captive for nine months. The blonde beauty was just 14 years old when the felons took her from her Salt Lake City home. During that time, she was repeatedly raped and tortured. On March 12, 2003, Elizabeth returned home with her parents after the police brought her into the station.
Upon Wanda’s release, Elizabeth released a statement to the public. “Without a doubt the past few weeks have been a roller coaster of emotion, and I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone for their kind words, support and concern,” she said via Instagram in September 2018. “It has meant so much to me. May we all remain vigilant in watching over our families, friends and community from anyone who would seek to hurt or take advantage. I truly believe life is meant to be happy and beautiful, and no matter what happens, that will remain my goal for me and for my family.”
Meanwhile, Ed announced that he is gay and leaving his wife, Lois Smart, in a heartfelt message to friends and family on Thursday, August 15. “Lois has been a loyal wife and extraordinary mother, who has had to endure an impossible part of this journey,” Ed’s note read according to the Desert News. “I deeply regret the excruciating pain this has caused her. Hurting he was never my intent. While our marriage will end, my love for Lois and everyone in my family is eternal.”
But Elizabeth fully supports her father through this transition, and it seems like she is making the most of her summer since she recently posted pictures from her vacation to Greece.
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