Antioch, California - The then 11-year-old-girl was kept entertained and apparently distracted for the entire 18 years of her captivity with a Nintendo Game Boy. Locked up in a shed in the backyard of her abductor's residence, Jaycee Lee Dugard, now 29, had been keep distracted by her captors by being allowed to play video games non-stop, ever since her abduction and moments right up to her liberation by police.
Initially, police psychologists thought they were dealing with a case of Stockholm syndrome.
"That's a psychological condition where the victim sympathizes with their captor to the point of refusing to escape their captivity even when the means and opportunity is available to them," said a police psychologist. "But in Dugard's case, she didn't even notice she had been kidnapped."
As police surrounded the residence, raiding the backyard of Dugard's captor (a convicted child molester and registered sex offender) with their weapon's drawn, they cautiously approached the shack that had been her home for the past 18 years.
Momentarily pausing, trying to identify the strange noises emanating from the direction of Dugard's shed before proceeding, they finally identified what they heard as the then state-of-the-art sound of a 1991 Nintendo Game Boy.
"It was horrible," said a parole officer describing Dugard's confined living conditions. "Absolutely horrible. We found her in the shed just sitting there on a lawn chair, playing an 18-year-old handheld game console. I mean what kind of monster would do that to a kid? Of course, the abduction, kidnapping and rape were pretty bad too."
Among Dugard's favorite video games policemen found (actually the only two she had to play for 18 years): "Super Mario Brothers" and ironically "The Legend of Zelda".
"Judging by the markings on the wall of the shed that Dugard scratched with her fingernails to keep track of her high scores, 'The Legend of Zelda' seemed to be her favorite," said police.
When questioned about it, Dugard said she could not remember why "The Legend of Zelda" was her favorite video game. Only that she felt compelled to rescue the Princess Zelda from the evil Ganon."
"Someday somebody had to," reportedly said a disillusioned Dugard to police. "Someday."
Tragically, according to the scorecard scrawled on the wall of the shed, Dugard herself never managed to free the Princess Zelda from the vile villain Ganon. Just like the Princess Zelda in the video game.