Abducted in Plain Sight

“Even those that are really angry with my parents and pointing fingers,” she told E!, “I’m like, That is starting them thinking about something that otherwise they wouldn’t have thought about. The point is, is that when [predators] target your child, they usually start by grooming all the people around the child so that their access to the child is…almost natural, like they’re your best friend.”

“They’re like the leader at church, you know, you go on service activities with. Or they’re the person in the community center or in the Boy Scout troop. So that conversation needs to begin because until we can have the actual understanding that most abuse of children, sexual abuse, is by someone they know, love and trust, and almost all of it happens inside the child’s home, we’re not going to get anywhere.”

The Brobergs were part of a tight-knit community in Pocatello, Idaho, and they were devoted members of the Church of Latter-day Saints. Mary Ann was the church chorister. When the Berchtolds—Gail, Robert and their five children—moved next door, the husbands bonded over being business and family men (so Bob Broberg said), the wives naturally gravitated to each other and the kids got along great, too. There was “a best friend for everyone” between the two families, Jan remembered.


With one yet to go, the eonline rendering is the best. The documentary is so dense that I did not follow it well. And Natalie Finn gets into the shame and guilt. Right or wrong, I cannot understand why anyone would subject themselves voluntarily to such negative reinforcement. ‘If you don’t do such and such you and others will suffer.’ That is the method Berchtold used and it is straight out of the LDS church.

The book Stolen Innocence was not a success and it is still not one today. Eonline says that Mary Ann does not even mention her affair with B and nobody knew about Bob providing “relief” until the relatively new documentary. The author does not come across as very educated, aware, or worldly so the book does not have a lot of appeal; it appears as if little will be gained by her perspective and she is unlikely to be a talented writer. Twenty-plus years in the making is another clue. Ditto the idea that I or we are here to educate you and prove that this can happen; people are better off doing that elsewhere and they are engaged mostly for entertainment and a story. The Brobergs are not the ones to be leading the education in that regard. The book is definitely not the work of an experienced, unattached journalist.

Meet the professor of cinematography….

I am still baffled as to why there were not also a battery of local charges against Berchtold. Pocatello, Idaho is about half Mormon (I don’t know what it was in 1974). It is around 55,000 population today and in the earlier ’70’s a neighboring town became part of it and the population grew rapidly. Idaho State University, approx. 8,000 students, is there.

One of the things about people affiliated with the LDS church is they have a continuous history of rebelling against the law. Preferring to deal with things themselves is another way to try and justify it.

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