Elizabeth Smart To Speak Today At Mitchell's Sentencing

Elizabeth Smart will speak directly to Brian David Mitchell today at his sentencing, almost nine years after she was kidnapped, raped and held captive.

SALT LAKE CITY— Elizabeth Smart will speak directly to Brian David Mitchell today at his sentencing, almost nine years after she was kidnapped, raped and held captive.

On Dec. 10, a federal jury convicted Mitchell, 57, a former street preacher, of kidnapping and transporting a minor across state lines for the purpose of illegal sex. He faces a possible life sentence in prison today at the hearing scheduled for 2:30 p.m.

In brief comments to Fox 13, Brian David Mitchell's lawyer, Robert Steele, said that sentencing guidelines prepared by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons call for his client to serve about 30 years.

However, the judge could depart from the recommendations and sentence him to serve up to life in a federal prison. Defense attorneys are hoping to persuade the judge to sentence Mitchell to serve time in a federal mental facility. The prosecution has asked for the maximum sentence of life in prison.

U.S. District Court Judge Dale Kimball will decide Mitchell's fate this afternoon at the sentencing.

At age 14, Elizabeth Smart was snatched from her bedroom at knifepoint in 2002. She was held captive by Mitchell, a homeless street preacher, and his wife, Wanda Barzee, for nine months. Mitchell forced her to "marry" him in a polygamous union.

UPDATE at 1:22 p.m.: In brief comments to Fox 13, Brian David Mitchell's lawyer, Robert Steele, said that sentencing guidelines prepared by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons call for his client to serve about 30 years.

However, the judge could depart from the recommendations and sentence him to serve up to life in a federal prison. Defense attorneys are hoping to persuade the judge to sentence Mitchell to serve time in a federal mental facility.

 

Chiacgo Tribune