Elizabeth Fritz was a teenage girl when her family reported her missing.

From what people observed, she lived with a loving family and never had a crossword with either of her parents.

However, one night, Elizabeth went out to run some errand and never returned. Here family members were worried sick and thought that and suspected the worst.

They even did not dismiss the possibility that their daughter joined a religious cult as she often joked about it.

The parents filed a report, and the local authorities began their search for Elizabeth.

Almost a week after Elizabeth’s disappearance, the Fritzl household received a letter from their daughter who stated that she left them became because she grew tired of the family.

The family members couldn’t believe it as Elizabeth never complained about anything and was always happy with everybody.

Following standard procedure, the police officers searching for the girl questioned everyone living in the area, including her parents.

No one knew about Elizabeth’s whereabouts. Her father, particular, was a little too co-operative with the police officers.

Everybody bought his act, thinking that he was just a devastated parent saddened by his daughter’s absence.

The reality was quite different as it was Josef Fritz, the vanished girl’s parent responsible for her disappearance.

What Happened?

One day one August 1984, Josef Fritz called Elizabeth into the family home’s basement.

He told her that he wanted help fixing the crooked door and asked her to carry it with him.

The teenage girl complied and assisted her father in putting the door back into place.

However, as soon as it connected with the hinges, Josef swung the door open with excessive force, knocking the Elizabeth out cold.

He then forced a towel soaked with ether on his daughter’s mouth, making sure that she couldn’t defend herself after waking up.

Sadly, the only thing Elizabeth saw after that day was a dirty cellar wall. Her father trapped her there and would torture her frequently.

The thought that a man like John Fritz would commit a heinous act like that crossed nobody’s mind.



Everybody thought that he was an honest and hardworking person who was the farthest thing from being a threat to the community.

Eventually, the police investigation went cold as there were no clues that hinted where the girl could have gone.

As time passed, people forgot the incident ever happened; however, the poor girls family didn’t.

In particular, her father would remind her that she was his slave and that he could impose his will on her whenever he pleases.

Visits To The Basement

Josef Fritzl would visit his daughter almost every day. At the very least, he went to the basement thrice a week.

Josef would wake up 8.am in the morning and head down there by 9.am, telling the family members not to disturb him while the man “worked” on his machines.

On some occasions, he would even spend the whole night in the basement, but Elizabeth’s mother never suspected any foul play as she believed that her husband dedicates a lot of time to his career.

In reality, however, Josef was a fiend. Initially, he beat his daughter to a pulp.

However, as time passed, he began to violate her s*xually.

These visits became more frequent, so much so, that Elisabeth got pregnant.

She miscarried two months later but became pregnant again, giving birth to a baby girl in 1988. She gave birth to another child two years later.

The boy (Stefan) and the girl (Kerstin) grew up with their mother in the basement.

They remained there throughout Elizabeth’s imprisonment.

Josef brought them monthly rations of water and food while his daughter tried to teach them fundamental education.

She attempted to give them a healthy life, which was almost impossible, considering the horrific situation.

More Children

Elizabeth gave birth to more children taking the total tally to seven.

One of the babies died a week after birth, while Josef took three of them upstairs.

However, he didn’t take them to provide them with a good life. Instead, he did it to hide what was going down in the basement.

The man staged elaborate findings of these children, placing them near doorsteps and bushes.

Every time the child discovered would be clean and had an accompanying note by Elisabeth, who claimed that she wasn’t able to provide for the baby, asking her parents to take care of them.

Surprisingly, nobody from social services bothered to question the Fritzl’s about the sudden discoveries of these children.

Most of them didn’t care to interrogate the family as they believed that Josef and Rosemarie were the grandparents.

Loose Ends

Josef Fritzl continued to torture his daughter and her children for several years. He had no intention of letting them go.

However, one day, Elizabeth’s nineteen-year-old daughter became ill. It seemed like she would die soon if she didn’t receive timely medical attention.

Elizabeth begged Josef to take their daughter to the hospital. Initially, he refused, but after hours and hours of begging and pleading, he called for an ambulance.

He provided them a letter from Elizabeth that explained her daughter’s condition. Once Kirsten got the appropriate medical attention, her health improved.

The hospital staff noticed that the bruises and the girl’s disease indicated that she wasn’t living life according to her own will and that there was something quite fishy.

They reported this to the police, who immediately began questioning Kirsten about where she came from and where her mother was living.

She did not provide any answers, but one of the police officers started to notice some inconsistencies in the letters written by Elizabeth.

Since the captive girl wrote those notes in panic, she made a lot of mistakes, and the detectives caught them in an instant.

They reopened the missing girl’s investigation and made Josef their prime suspect.

Free At Last

Seeing the whole situation unravel before his eyes, Josef began to panic. He released his daughter from the cellar and planned to escape.

However, Elizabeth was healthy enough to go to the police and inform them about her father’s crime. They caught him within hours and imprisoned him for life.

Elizabeth changed her identity and lived with her family in a fully-secured area named “Village X.”

She hasn’t given any interviews ever since and lives the life of a hermit, yet in complete harmony.

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