Former kidnapping victim appears at Houston event
A woman who knows what the three women rescued this week after a decade of captivity in Cleveland was in the Houston area last night. And she had some advice for Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight.
Elizabeth Smart was kidnapped in 2002 and held for over a year before being reunited with her family. She says Berry, DeJesus and Knight shouldn't talk about their ordeal unless they want to.
“They don’t need to share their story. They don’t need to share details,” Smart said. “It’s enough for everyone else to know that they were kidnapped, that a terrible thing happened.”
Smart went through physical and emotional abuse in the year she was missing, and says the emotional abuse takes an even bigger toll than the verbal abuse.
“Words are so much stronger than anything physical,” Smart said.
Smart is now 25 years old, married and gave the women in Cleveland the same advice her mother gave her years ago.
“This man has taken so much of my life away that I shouldn’t give him another second. By living and being happy, that’s the best punishment that I could ever give him,” Smart explained.
Smart says there is only one thing that matters.
“They are recovered. That’s all anyone really needs to know,” Smart stated.
Smart was speaking at an event for the Tomball Regional Medical Center, which was celebrating the first anniversary of the Health Woman program.