Elizabeth Smart Kidnapper Reportedly Living Near Elementary School After Being released From Prison

Elizabeth Smart's kidnapper Wanda Barzee is reportedly living near an elementary school, after being released from prison earlier this year.

According to In Touch, Barzee now lives in downtown Salt Lake City, Utah, with her residence reportedly only being a short distance from the elementary school.

The outlet also reports that, based on her registered sex offender status, a corrections officer confirmed for them that Barzee is not allowed to be on the premises of "licensed daycares, preschools, primary and secondary schools, community parks, and public playgrounds."

Barzee and her husband Brian David Mitchell kidnapped Smart in 2002, and were sentenced to prison in 2009. While Mitchell remains behind bars, Barzee was released in September, prompting Smart to post a statement on her Instagram account.

“Without doubt the past few weeks have been a rollercoaster of emotion, and I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone for their kind words, support and concern," she stated. "It has meant so much to me."

"May we all remain vigilant in watching over our families, friends and community from anyone who would seek to hurt or take advantage," Smart continued. "I truly believe life is meant to be happy and beautiful, and no matter what happens that will remain my goal for me and for my family."

Smart posted a separate statement on Instagram, prior to Barzee's release, saying at the time that "the past few days could certainly be described as shocking."

"Only a couple months ago I was informed one of my captors, Wanda Barzee, would not be released until 2024. Now she will be released in less than a week," she added. "I find this news greatly disturbing and incomprehensible. In my efforts to learn more it seems there are no viable legal options open to me at this time."

"So it is now that I ask those that have the power, and her family to start proceedings to have her be civilly committed," Smart went on to say. "To my knowledge she has neither complied with medication or treatment and as some one who has experienced first hand just how depraved she truly is, I believe her to be a threat and a danger not just to myself but to the community, any vulnerable person."


"I am very concerned and precautions have been taken however I refuse to live in fear," she also wrote. "I have spent the last 15 years rebuilding and moving forward with my life, having a family, and pursuing my goals. I lived in absolute fear and terror for nine months, no matter the outcome I will not do so again."

At this time, Smart does not appear to have commented on the news that Barzee is living close to an elementary school.