It was one of the most infamous Long Island crimes of the 1990's: a young Long Island girl was kidnapped and held over two weeks by a man who turned out to be a friend of her family.
When Katie Beers of Bay Shore, vanished from an arcade in late 1992, people both nationally and locally kept an interested eye on the case. When she was found, having been hidden in the underground bunker of her abductor John Esposito, a nation rejoiced. Esposito later pleaded guilty to kidnapping. There were allegations during the trial that Esposito sexually abused Beers, though he would deny it.
Yesterday, Esposito was found dead in his prison cell just after a parole hearing, bringing the case once again back into the spotlight. The case of his death is not yet known.
Beers had led a difficult childhood even before the abduction. While she was missing, it became known that she had suffered years of abuse at the hands of her godmother, who had been her guardian, and that she had been sexually abused for years at the hands of her godmother and her godmother's husband.
Beers went onto chronicle her ordeal in a book released earlier this year, called "Buried Memories." Although the many adults in her life failed her early on, her book describes how after her kidnapping, she went onto live with a foster family who gave her the love and attention she was denied earlier in her life. She is also now also a married mother of two.
Even years after a crime such as a kidnapping occurs, many victims still live in fear of their abductor. They live in fear, wondering if their kidnapper will ever get out of prison, facing them at a parole board hearing, and if they could ever hurt them again.
Although a loss of life, anyone's life, is never a reason to celebrate or to be happy, Beers can now be at peace, with the knowledge that her abductor will not ever be released from prison.