The story of Jaycee Lee Dugard has to be one of the most shocking stories I’ve ever heard.
Being held in captivity for nearly two decades is such a horrifying thing to even imagine. But the fact that Jaycee went through this trauma with her two daughters makes the story more heartbreaking.
The eldest of those daughters is Angel Dugard, who was rescued along with her mom and sister in 2009. For Jaycee, this meant reuniting with her own mother. However, things must have been overwhelming for the little girls, who didn’t even know the truth about their biological mother.
Still, it looks like Starlet and Angel have enough resilience and love in their hearts to heal and build lives for themselves after all that’s happened to their family. That’s why I find the Dugards’ strength inspiring.
Angel Dugard’s Bio
Before we dig into the details, here’s a quick overview of what we know about Angel Dugard and her immediate family members:
- Birthdate: August 1994 (exact day unknown)
- Birthplace: Antioch, California
- Parent: Jaycee Lee Dugard (born on the 3rd of May, 1980)
- Maternal Grandmother: Terry Probyn
- Sibling: Starlet Dugard (born in 1997, exact day unknown)
The Kidnapping and Rescue of Angel Dugard’s Mother
On the morning of the 10th of June, 1991, an 11-year-old girl was walking to the bus stop near her home in South Lake Tahoe, California, thinking about an upcoming school trip. Suddenly, a van stopped by, and the girl just thought the couple in the car were going to ask for directions.
But before she knew it, someone got out of the car, held her down, zapped her with a stun gun, and laid her in the backseat under a blanket. On the drive, she faintly recalls a man laughing about how they “got away with it.”
That little girl was Jaycee Lee Dugard, Angel’s mother, and this heartbreaking story is just the beginning of an 18-year nightmare.
You see, the couple in the car were Phillip Craig Garrido, a convicted sex offender, and his wife, Nancy.
They held Jaycee in captivity for exactly 18 years, four months, and 16 days, moving her between tents and a soundproof shed in their backyard. Over the years, Garrido repeatedly assaulted and raped her, fathering two daughters—Angel and Starlet.
Rescue: August 2009
Phillip Garrido Image source: Google
When Angel Dugard was 15, Garrido took her and her sister to the University of California because he wanted to hold an event on campus—Garrido seemed to have some serious delusions.
Thankfully, the events manager and UC Berkeley Police Department member, Lisa Campbell, sensed that something wasn’t right. Garrido introduced the girls as his daughters, and they didn’t say anything, but alarm bells still sounded in Campbell’s head.
For one, she found the girls “unresponsive emotionally” and “extremely pale,” while Garrido was animated and passionate. She also thought they should have been in school, considering it was only one o’clock.
Worried about the girl’s safety, Campbell played along with Garrido’s story long enough to get his name and ask him to come in for a meeting later. She then ran a background check, only to find that he was a sex offender on parole.
The following day, the police investigated further and got in touch with Garrido’s parole officer. By the end of the investigations, 60-year-old Phillip Garrido had confessed. He and his 55-year-old wife pleaded guilty and were sentenced to 431 and 36 years in prison, respectively.
The 18-year-old case of the kidnapping of Jaycee Lee Dugard was solved. Jaycee, Angel, and Starlet Dugard finally got their freedom.
9 Facts About Angel Dugard and Her Family
So, we’ve seen a quick overview of Jaycee Lee Dugar’s story and how she gave birth to two daughters in captivity.
Of course, there isn’t much the public knows about the details of the girl’s life (in captivity or otherwise). But here are some of the information that we do know about Angel Dugard:
1. Angel Was Born to a 14-Year-Old Jaycee Lee Dugard
Around 34 months after her kidnapping, Jaycee was told by Phillip and Nancy Garrido that they suspected she was pregnant—and she was, indeed, about four months pregnant. However, the couple didn’t provide any adequate medical care.
Instead, she was simply shown labor videos to “prepare” for the delivery. When the time came, 14-year-old Jaycee was giving birth alone somewhere in Garrido’s backyard.
She named the baby girl Angel and fell in love with her immediately. She was happy she had someone to love and knew she would have to protect her at all costs.
Three years after Angel’s birth, Jaycee had a second daughter, Starlet. Jaycee felt that the two little girls were like pieces of her own mom, Terry Probyn, that she could hold on to.
Of course, Terry Probyn had no idea at the time that she’d been a grandmother. Still, she kept her daughter in her heart all these years and never gave up hope, even though the authorities told her the chances of finding Jaycee were slim.
2. Angel Didn’t Know Jaycee Was Her Biological Mother Initially
Nancy Image source: Google
Phillip Garrido never told Angel and her sister that Jaycee was their mother. Growing up, they were told that they were his and Nancy’s daughters. What about Jaycee? Well, the girls believed she was their older sister, and they didn’t even call her Jaycee.
Over the years, Garrido forbade Jaycee from using her real name. She had to go by “Allissa.”
Maybe he did this because he was scared someone would hear her using her name and recognize her from the posters Terry Probyn was putting up. Or perhaps it was just a manipulation tactic. Either way, I think it was incredibly cruel.
3. Angel Was Homeschooled in Captivity
Although Jaycee Dugard couldn’t tell Angel that she was her biological mother, she still tried her best to care for her and her younger sister. In fact, she started gathering books and homeschooled the two girls in Phillip Garrido’s backyard.
Obviously, this can’t have been easy, considering that Jaycee herself was kidnapped when she was only making her way through the 5th grade. Still, it looks like she managed a good job of loving and educating her two daughters, who later on went to college after their rescue.
4. Angel’s Mother Didn’t Show Up for Her Impact Statement
When it was time for Jaycee to read out her impact statement in court, she chose not to go and send her mother on her behalf. So, Terry Probyn showed up to the hearing to read her own statement as well as Jaycee’s statement.
Jaycee didn’t want to waste another second of her life in the presence of Phillip and Nancy Garrido. She just wished them to have “as many sleepless nights” as she did. And after nearly two decades of captivity, I don’t think anyone can blame her!
She feels, and rightfully so, that the Garrido couple stole her life from her. In fact, “A Stolen Life” was the title of Jaycee Dugard’s first book. She later wrote a second book about her newfound freedom, which was aptly called “Freedom: My Book of Firsts.”
5. Jaycee Didn’t Want to Reveal Too Much About Angel in Her Books
In her second book, Jaycee does talk a bit about her daughters and how they’re getting along seven years after the ordeal. She says they’re both off to college, but she doesn’t get into more details about their lives. She believes Angel and her sister “deserve their own stories.”
From what little Jaycee does say about the Dugard girls in the book, it seems like they’re doing well—I mean, as well as you’d expect in a situation like this.
6. Angel Dugard Is Resilient and Adapting
Just as you’d expect, Angel, her mom, and her sister all went through therapy to work through the trauma.
In a 2016 ABC News interview, Jaycee described both her daughters as resilient, beautiful, and loving. The report even highlighted how the girls appear so vibrant, curious, and independent that it would be hard to guess they went through such a traumatic experience if you’ve just met them.
Even those who knew the story were surprised by how polite and well-mannered Angel and Starlet were. To some people, it seemed like the girls were getting along fine and shared interests with other girls their age.
To me, this goes to say that Jaycee Dugard tried her best to shelter and raise her daughters despite the terrible situation she was in!
Jaycee herself seems to be jumping back into her life and cherishing time with her family, which is also grateful to have her back. For instance, she said that her aunt started a new tradition of gifting Jaycee a special “home” ornament for every Christmas she’d been home.
7. Jaycee Won’t Try to Stop Angel From Meeting Phillip Garrido
In the same ABC News interview, Jaycee revealed that she wouldn’t try and stop Angel or her sister if they wanted to visit Garrido in prison. She definitely wouldn’t be happy about it, but she wants her daughters to make their own choices in life.
Terry Probyn shared a similar sentiment, saying that it’s ultimately the girls’ decision. Still, she hoped her granddaughters would choose not to see Garrido again.
8. The Dugard Daughters Are Keeping a Low Profile
Jaycee Lee Dugard did a few interviews, started spreading the word about the JAYC Foundation, and even went on book signings. She’s also running an Instagram account, which is full of wholesome updates about her enjoying life and trying new stuff!
One of the first times the Dugards were seen out together as a family was back in 2016 when they all went out to grab ice cream and window shop. But so far, it seems like Angel (and Starlet, for that matter) chooses a low-profile life. That’s entirely valid, too.
9. Angel’s Mother Received $20 Million in a Settlement
As I’ve mentioned earlier, Phillip Garrido was on parole when he kidnapped Jaycee and fathered her two daughters. What’s shocking here is that some sources say that parole officers came to check Garrido’s house 60 times during those 18 years!
At some point, he also wore an ankle monitor, which showed how much time he spent in his “secret backyard.”
So, later on after Garrido’s arrest, an investigation by the Inspector General found that the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation failed to supervise one of its parolees. As a result, Angel’s mother received $20 million.
Terry Probyn said that the anger is still eating at her, even several years after her daughter’s rescue.
Insights Into the JAYC Foundation
Rebecca Bailey with Jaycee Image source: Google
I’ve mentioned earlier that Angel’s mother was involved in the JAYC Foundation but didn’t really expand on it, so here we go:
Jaycee’s family has gone through a terrible crisis. Even after the rescue, she found that her family needed help reconnecting. So, she started the JAYC (stands for “Just Ask Yourself to Care”) Foundation with one goal in mind: to serve families that have experienced a crisis.
The Foundation’s efforts range from creating protected spaces for families in transition to school programs and workshops that help build empathy.
Currently, Terry Probyn is on the board of directors along with Jaycee herself. On the advisory committee, sits Dr. Rebecca Bailey, who was part of the team helping Jaycee and her daughters in their recovery after the rescue.
That said, it’s not clear if Angel Dugard is involved in the JAYC Foundation.
It’s been around 15 years since the Dugards were rescued. So far, Angel and her sister are choosing to remain private, which is perfectly understandable.
I can only hope they’re on their road to recovery and trying to enjoy their lives to the fullest!