During the year 2008, an Austrian woman named Elisabeth Fritzl revealed to authorities that her father Josef Fritzl had held her captive for 24 years. There were several instances of Josef abusing and raping her as she was held captive in their basement at their family home.
As a result, Elisabeth had to give birth to seven children, three of whom stayed in captivity with their mother, Fritzl and his wife, Rosemarie, and one of whom died just a few days after delivery.
Josef was imprisoned on suspicion of false detention, rape, and other parts of the penal code when Elisabeth made a complaint to the police. In March 2009, he was found guilty of all charges and sentenced to life in prison.
This is the storey of Elisabeth Fritzl, the mysterious young woman who lived in the basement.
She was born to Josef Fritzl and Rosemarie Fritzl in Austria in the year 1966, and was raised by her mother and father. She had six siblings – three brothers and three sisters – and they all lived in the same house.
He physically and emotionally abused her as a child in 1977, when she was just 11 years old. When she reached 15 and had finished high school, Elisabeth began training to be a waitress.
When she and a buddy fled their home in 1983, they went into hiding in Vienna. Within 20 days of her disappearance, police located her and returned her to her parents. A few years later, she returned to her waitress training and completed it in order to land a job in a nearby town.
What Happened to Elisabeth Fritzl?
He asked Elisabeth to help him reinstall a door in the basement of their house on Austrian soil in 1984. Assuming she didn’t know what he was up to, Elisabeth proceeded down the stairs to assist her father. When she was about to go, a little cloth piece drenched in ether was placed over her mouth and nose to keep her from leaving.
When Elisabeth helped her father arrange to enslave her, she had no idea what she was doing. It wasn’t until the late 1970s that Josef Fritzl received official approval from local officials to create an underground prison cell.
Josef was able to acquire the go-ahead to build a nuclear bunker in the basement of his home because it was common practise in those days of the Cold War.
As a result of the local council’s grant of 2000 pounds, Josef was able to complete the building project. A succession of doors must be opened before reaching the cellar in order to keep Elisabeth imprisoned by his plans.
Life in the Basement: 24 Years
For the following 24 years, Elisabeth was subjected to a never-ending barrage of torment. She had to use her bare hands to catch rats at times. Summer was the toughest season for her, as she detailed in her letters, because of the unbearable heat and humidity.
Elisabeth’s life was at a standstill compared to the rest of the world’s. First, her father bound his daughter with an iron chain so tightly that she could barely move more than a few inches on either side of the bed. He then attached the chain around her waist, allowing her additional mobility.
After a few months, he decided to remove the chain because it was interfering with his sex life. Until she was freed in April 2008, Josef sexually assaulted her and raped her numerous times a day. In those 25 years, he raped her at least 3000 times, giving birth to seven children. As they grew older, Elisabeth’s children witnessed her abuse.
Despite the fact that she felt broken on the inside, Elisabeth tried to find solace in the fact that her three children were living better lives than those who lived below her.
Josef used to beat and kick her on a consistent basis. In the past, he would force Elisabeth to re-enact violent pornographic situations in front of the camera. Elisabeth has suffered both bodily and psychological trauma as a result of this. For the first five years of her life, she was completely alone.
In 1996, one of her children died shortly after birth in the cellar due to complications with the delivery. When he was just three days old, the baby had respiratory difficulties and died in his mother’s arms. Josef later acknowledged that and incinerated the child’s body.
Fritzl argued throughout the trial that Elisabeth’s behaviour was unpredictable, so he locked her up to keep her safe from the rest of the world. He sought to present Josef as a kind and committed father who spent time and money on both of his families – the lawyer.
The birth of her children gave her a reason to live.
For her, the arrival of the first children was a harrowing experience. A sight at her children gave her a reason to live after a long period of being a single parent. For nearly a decade, she gave birth to all of her children without the assistance of a doctor. When she arrived, Josef gave her disinfectant and a pair of unclean scissors, as well as a book about birthing.
Elisabeth and her children were threatened by Fritzl if they try to go. On the court’s indictment, it was stated: “He claimed that the doors were equipped with an electric shock mechanism and that if they tried to escape, poison would be released into the cellar, killing them all instantly.”
Josef Fritzl used to turn off the basement’s electricity supply for days at a time so that Elisabeth was left in complete darkness.
Elisabeth’s route out of the Dark Basement Life
Kerstin, her 19-year-old daughter, had to be sent to the hospital due to an emergency. It was Joseph Fritzl, who had previously shown no mercy to her, who drove her to the hospital in his car. Kerstin’s doctors got suspicious when they saw her condition. The police were informed of the occurrence by doctors afterward.
If they want to save her, they made a public plea in order to get her mother to come forward with the information. In their basement, she and her two sons watched the appeals on television. As a result, she made a request to her father. As Josef Fritzl grew older, he noticed that his abilities were decreasing and that it was becoming increasingly difficult for him to care for both of his families.
His brain started working on ways to get rid of all this without drawing too much attention. He gave in for the first time in 24 years. The hospital staff was entertained by these anecdotes. However, both the police and the medics were sceptical of his claims.
The authorities separated Elisabeth from her father in the hospital and threatened to file a child abuse case against her for her neglect of their daughter.
Thereupon she agreed to expose everything to the authorities in exchange for never seeing her father again.
Girl in the Basement: A Documentary on Elisabeth Fritzl
Critics were intrigued by the true storey of Elisabeth Fritzl told in the crime thriller “Girl in the Basement.”
Sara, an adolescent who has just turned 18 and is yearning to leave her parents’ house, is the inspiration for the film. He kidnaps her and keeps her in his basement for years since he doesn’t want to let her go.
Elisabeth Fritzl’s whereabouts are unknown.
In the hospital, Elisabeth was able to see the sun for the first time in 24 years since one of her children was in need of immediate attention. Her father promptly escorted her back to the basement, which prompted a hospital employee to call the police.
Fortunately, she was found and taken to the state care facility by police officers who intervened to save her life. An Austrian village nearby provided Elisabeth with rehabilitation. Because of the years of trauma she has endured, psychologists have recommended that she have lifetime therapy. As a result, a new nickname and persona were bestowed upon Elisabeth.
With her children, Elisabeth is now claimed to be living in a bright home where memories of the past are less likely to surface.
Her children’s ages range from 17 to 35 today. When it came to healing from their anxiety and panic attacks, several of her children had trouble. To help them get back to their usual lives, they were put on a tight diet, required to work out regularly, and given mood-altering medications.
Elisabeth’s relationship with her mother, Rosemarie, was first tense, but the two eventually became close, according to a major news publication.
It has been revealed that her jailed father Josef Fritzl is suffering from dementia in the Garsten Abbey jail. To avoid revealing himself in his final days, Josef Fritzl changed his name to Josef Mayrhoff.