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Woman sentenced to prison in Elizabeth Smart case

  • Wanda Barzee enters district court in Salt Lake City for sentencing on Friday, May 21, 2010. U.S. District Judge Dale Kimball has ordered Barzee, 64, to spend 15 years in prison, with credit for about seven years she's already served for the kidnapping of Elizabeth Smart. In November, Barzee pleaded guilty to federal charges of kidnapping and unlawful transportation of a minor across state lines in Smart's abduction. She also has pleaded guilty in a state case. (AP Photo/The Salt Lake Tribune, Al Hartmann)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Nearly eight years after Elizabeth Smart was snatched from her Salt Lake City bedroom at knifepoint, the woman who pleaded guilty to the June 2002 kidnapping is headed to prison.

Wanda Eileen Barzee was sentenced on Friday to two terms of up to 15 years in prison in back-to-back hearings in state and federal court. The terms will be served concurrently and Barzee will likely be held at the Federal Medical Center, Carswell, in Fort Worth, Texas, where she can be treated for mental illness.

"I know the gravity of my crimes and how serious they are," Barzee said during the federal court hearing. "I'm just so sorry again for all the pain and suffering I caused upon the Smart family."

Barzee, 64, pleaded guilty in November to federal charges of kidnapping and unlawful transportation of a minor across state lines in Smart's abduction. The federal judge gave her credit for about seven years she's already served.

In the state case, kidnapping and sexual assault charges against Barzee were dropped in exchange for a plea of guilty, but mentally ill in a parallel case for the attempted abduction of Smart's cousin, Olivia Wright, also in 2002.

Barzee has agreed to testify in pending state and federal cases against her now-estranged husband, Brian David Mitchell.

Smart was 14 when she was kidnapped at knifepoint from her bedroom. She was found nine months later, in March 2003, walking the streets of a Salt Lake City suburb with Barzee and Mitchell.

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