Friday, November 12, 2010

Elizabeth Smart says kidnapper was obsessed with sex

Elizabeth Smart has told a US court that the street preacher accused of kidnapping her in 2002 frequently prayed that the teenager would fulfill her marital duty of having sex - something she said was "about the farthest thing" from her prayers.

Elizabeth Smart says kidnapper was obsessed with sex
Elizabeth Smart walks after she testified for the first time in a competency hearing for her kidnapper Brian David Mitchell on October 1, 2009 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Photo: GETTY
Miss Smart took the stand for the third day, giving a spirited rejection of Brian David Mitchell's defence that he suffers from an escalating mental illness and holds extreme religious beliefs that lead him to think he is directed by God.
Mr Mitchell was a crude, vulgar, self-serving person who used religion to justify his actions, including her kidnapping and rape over nine months, she said, calling him a hypocrite.
"He was his number one priority, followed by sex, drugs and alcohol, but he used religion in all of those aspects to justify everything," Miss Smart said in a clear voice, confidently expressing her own religious knowledge.
Miss Smart finished her testimony on Wednesday morning after about 30 minutes of cross-examination by a defence lawyer for Mr Mitchell, who is accused of taking her from home knifepoint on June 5, 2002, when she was 14.

Mr Mitchell, 57, is charged in federal court with kidnapping and unlawful transportation of a minor across state lines. If convicted, he faces a life sentence.

Now 23, Miss Smart was found in March 2003 with Mitchell on the streets of a Salt Lake City suburb.
Mr Mitchell was not in the courtroom to hear to hear her testify. As on each previous day of the trial, he was removed for disrupting the proceedings by singing hymns. He watches the trial on closed-circuit television from a holding cell.

The trial resumes on Monday and is expected to last until next month.

In previous testimony, Smart said that during the nine months she was held, she endured almost daily rapes and was forced to drink alcohol, use drugs and view pornography.