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There was one set of footprints leading away, leading Welsh to believe he had carried Jan into the motor home. They stayed off the radar for 35 days. All the while, Berchtold was busy brainwashing Jan, playing her tapes that wove a whole fantastical tapestry about being half-alien, and that it was her job to save a planet on the verge of destruction.

Of course, she was instructed that, if she told anybody about any of it, particularly the part about Berchtold having sex with her, her father would be killed, Karen would go blind and Susan would be taken away. On Nov. Biggest Unsolved Murder Mysteries. Joe, who says in the film that his brother "was always a sexual pervert," enlists the FBI to trace Berchtold's whereabouts, and they caught up with him and Jan in Mexico. Because of the fake plot Berchtold had immersed her in, Jan insisted she wasn't raped.

Mary Ann says that a doctor's examination revealed that her hymen was intact Jan explains that he would only insert about an inch of his penis into her and Jan seemed far more concerned about what was going to happen to B than anything else. Meanwhile, their "marriage" was annulled. Berchtold was indicted on kidnapping charges.

But on Dec. Bob's homosexual liaison with Berchtold, for the world to know. The shame of being exposed proved too great, so the Brobergs agreed to state that their daughter "was not taken by force or against her will, nor was she held or confined against her will at any time while in the company of the defendant," and that Berchtold may have been under the impression that he had their consent to have Jan with him.

The five Berchtold children are mentioned once in the story, in the acknowledgement that they exist. They weren't interested in dredging up the past.

Broken in Plain Sight: A Story of Truth, Healing, and Love

In the spring of , Mary Ann visited Berchtold, and they ended up having sex—the start of an eight-month affair. With the guy who had kidnapped her daughter. In fact, he encouraged her to leave her husband and start a new life in Utah. Also during that period, Berchtold visited Jan nine times, spending the night with her twice. Bob Broberg filed for divorce and made sure to be out of the house with the girls when Mary Ann got the papers, which alleged that she was endangering their daughters.

He called it the worst day of his life. A lawyer advised Jan to cut Berchtold out of her life and go plead her case with her husband, who ultimately was relieved to reconcile. They remained married until Bob Broberg died in November He pleaded guilty to felony kidnapping in June and was put on five years' probation and sentenced to five years in prison, all suspended except for 45 days, and told to report to jail within three months. In the meantime, a year-old Jan was begging her parents to let her go to Jackson Hole, Wyo.

She started acting out and eventually Berchtold called and told Mary Ann that Jan would just hitchhike to him if they didn't let her go.

Abducted in Plain Sight: Jan Broberg on Berchtold Kidnapping

So, Mary Ann without her husband's knowledge put Jan on a plane and sent her to Jackson Hole, where she stayed for two weeks with Berchtold in his motor home. Or at the very least suspend judgment. Jan flew to Salt Lake City, where her mom picked her up, but on Aug. At one point Jan did call her family, telling her dad that she still wanted to marry Berchtold, and that he wanted to marry her. When he was done, they went to the payphone and called a number that was written in the still-open phone book that was attached to the booth. The hold that Berchtold had on Jan didn't really start to crack until Jan.

They Never Did

Two men were convicted of arson, but authorities could never connect the fire to Berchtold. He was charged with first-degree kidnapping and found not guilty by reason of mental defect. He spent less than six months in a mental facility. When he bought her an ice cream one day, she freaked out and called her mom, begging to come home. It wasn't until then that she realized none of the terrible things Berchtold had told her would happen—about the aliens, about her sister going blind, etc.

And then She later got married and had a son, then divorced. She's an actress who's been steadily working since the early s and is best known for playing Louise on Everwood , while her most recent role was on the TruTV series I'm Sorry. So, theater saved my life. That's why I think I've always been involved in the arts because I know the power. When Mary Ann's book, Stolen Innocence , came out, she and Jan embarked on a series of speaking engagements.

Berchtold, calling the story "a pack of lies," compiled his own version of events, printed it out like a manifesto and handed copies out around the town wherever they were appearing. Jan eventually secured an injunction against him for stalking, set to expire only when he did. Mother and daughter were speaking at Dixie State College in St. George, Utah, in March when Berchtold showed up, with a gun. Berchtold ended up running into one of the bikers with his car, and the guy remained on the hood, clinging to the windshield wipers, until he saw the driver pull a gun.

I have children," Jan told the Deseret Morning News after the incident. I'm not defeated. Berchtold was charged and found guilty of aggravated assault possession of a firearm by a restricted person. Facing down another trip to jail, he took his whole bottle of heart medication and washed it down with kahlua and milk. That was in Joe Berchtold agreed to participate in the movie because his brother was dead, feeling someone should speak for the family. Broberg says that, while she originally chose to do the film anyway to help others who have suffered abuse, or to help people recognize the hallmarks of a predator or the signs that someone is being abused, getting this Netflix bump has proved an unparalleled way to get her story out.

Jan worried for a long time about sharing all of the, not just grisly, but really out-there details of her story, naturally wondering if some people wouldn't believe her. Ultimately, she realized that it didn't matter what people thought.

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My parents somehow came through all of it and stayed together. Our family is a loving, intact family that went on to do amazing things. I want people to have that hope, too. In response to those who have asked for more, she says "maybe there will be an opportunity to do that.


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But at least we can talk about it. We can look at, how does that start? But his destructive relationship with Tan has an undeniable wrinkle of the gendered and the sexual, as when Tan—then a teenage girl—describes a charged touch on the arm, a request to touch his belly, his threats against her male friends.


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I was not a dumb kid. But he was the most interesting person who saw me as an artist who had stories to tell, who kind of saw me as a human. And that was kind of gratifying on its own. And he actually expanded my world, he was a great mentor. That statement, that framing of the relationship has rattled in my brain since I heard it, somehow both clarifying and further clouding my feelings about the relationships I had as a younger person with older people, with older men.

I was 22 and he was I was reading Turgenev in a fast-casual chain.

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He struck up a conversation. We discussed Russian literature, my acting career that was grinding away to nowhere, his travels, the languages he knew, his work, his family history. I felt a twinge of disappointment after leaving without exchanging information, though it had a sort of melancholy correctness. He was more resourceful, and he messaged me on Facebook—a profile under a pseudonym. He was established, successful, easy to Google. We went on a date. Or a friendly lunch? Or a date. I was broke and awed by the fancy meal and wine—during the day! And we discussed art and travel and culture, and he told me I was brilliant and beautiful and so incredibly special.

An incredible thrill. Things fizzled after he unexpectedly appeared at my job and I received a series of discomfiting emails. Even so, we met a few more times over the years.