THE hit Netflix series Abducted in Plain Sight is the gripping story of how a young girl was kidnapped twice by a neighbour.
Here’s what you need to know about the shocking events that are recalled in the Skye Borgman directed documentary.
What is the true story behind the documentary?
Jan Broberg was kidnapped twice by neighbour Robert B Berchtold as a young girl – once aged 12 and again aged 14.
The community in Idaho in which she lived the early 1970s were completely under the 40-year-old paedophile’s spell.
Berchtold lured both Bob and Mary Ann Broberg, who were members of the Church of the Latter Day Sain, into separate sexual encounters, playing on their vulnerability and guilt to achieve his sick aims.
Berchtold was a friend of the family had been had been molesting Jan for months and convinced her aliens wanted her to have a child with him.
He told Jan’s parents he had been abused by an aunt as a child, and as part of his therapy, he needed to spend time with their daughters.
For six months, he slept in Jan’s bed four days a week, playing “therapy tapes” and molesting her as she slept, drugged on sleeping pills.
When he asked to take Jan to see horses at a local stable in October 1974, her mother agreed and while there Berchtold gave her an “allergy pill” after which she passed out.
DRUGGED AND ABDUCTED
When she woke, she was in a motorhome, with an alien voice telling her from a recorder that she was part-alien, and it was her “mission” to have a child.
Berchtold had taken Jan to Mexico, where he spent five weeks abusing her and even married her, since the legal age of marriage in the country was just 12.
But after she was abducted, her family refused to believe he has kidnapped her and didn’t report her missing for days.
They didn’t call the cops for several days out of fears they would upset Berchtold’s wife.
In fact they even tried to halt Berchtold’s prosecution which went ahead anyway, though his five year sentence was reduced to just 45 days.
But, incredibly, in 1976, he abducted Jan for a second time, fleeing to California, enrolling her at a Catholic girls’ school and posing as her father.
The young girl was missing for 100 days before she was found and returned home.
After the second abduction, Berchtold was forced to sever contact with Jan.
A court ordered him detained a psychiatric facility and stayed there for six months before he was released, also serving little over a month of jail time for all his crimes.
Mary Ann and Jan Broberg wrote a book about the experience called ‘Stolen Innocence: The Jan Broberg Story’ in 2004.
Incredibly Berchtold resurfaced to refute their account and even filed a lawsuit to prevent its release. He also turned up at one of Jan’s speaking events for the book with a gun.
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His goal was to see Jan again and they came face-to-face as the lawsuit was heard in court, almost 30 years after he abducted her.
During the hearing Jan learnt he had been living just an hour away from her.
A year later, Berchtold took his own life. Jan Broberg is now 56 and is now an actress.
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