Elizabeth Smart Research Paper

1161 Words 5 Pages
On June 5, 2002, Elizabeth Smart said, “Goodnight” to her family and rested her head on her pillow. Just a few hours later, Smart would wake up with a cold knife on her throat and a stranger standing above her. As she was dragged out of bed and down the hallway of her two- story home, she internally screamed and pleaded for someone to save her. Just when she thought she would actually scream, her captor, Brian David Mitchell, bent over and whispered in her ear. “If you make a sound, if you do anything that causes any attention or causes someone to come, I not only will kill you, but I will kill anyone who tries to stop me” (Duke). Throughout the nine months of Smart’s kidnapping, she taught herself, her community, and the nation that although sometimes …show more content…
They plastered her posters all over the city and broadcasted her picture on the local news stations and, finally, on national television. While the media helped generate interest in Smart’s case and help rescue her, they also complicated the public’s perception of Smart herself. A key point made by the media and police, was that Smart never shouted, “I AM ELIZABETH SMART,” when she was caught in public with her captors. Elizabeth stood two feet away from a police officer in the Salt Lake City Library and asked if she was Elizabeth Smart. Her answer? “No, I am not.” With the pressure on her and threats that were made to her and her family, Smart was not going to act out and possibly jeopardize herself and her family. In every interview or article published after her release, she stated that the most hateful thing anyone would ask her is why did she not run or yell? The answer is simple to Smart, “I thought about running or trying to escape several times. But every time I would think about it, she knew she was putting herself and her family’s lives at risk. He threatened to kill my family, and I couldn’t do that to them.”

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