When Sherri Papini gone, she has become one of California’s most recognizable women. Her photo was on billboards, and details of her disappearance were covered in the news and social media.
All of America wondered who had kidnapped herwhile his husband and children suffered. But nothing was as it seemed.
Chronology of a disappearance
Papini, a 34-year-old housewife, lived in Redding, California with her husband Keith, who worked for an electrical supply store. They had been married for seven years and had two young children.
He November 2, 2016, while his children were in kindergarten, Papini went for a run. And when Keith got back from work, she wasn’t there to pick up the kids.
Concerned, husband used an app for track your phone and his headphones at an intersection 1.5 kilometers from his home. It looked like they had been dropped in a hurry.
Within hours the case was treated as a Missing person. Inquiries about Papini made national headlines and his face appeared on the front pages of newspapers.
Keith has launched public calls for the safe return of his wife and family offered a $40,000 reward. The community has even banded together and raised money, keeping the case alive in the media.
On November 24 of that year, Thanksgiving morning, a motorist found Papini wandering on a highway in Yolo Countyabout 240 kilometers from where he disappeared, he rebuilds The mirror.
After 22 days it was partially tied with a chain, covered in bruises and with her hair cut off.
daddy revealed that she was kidnapped and released at 4 am that day. She finally managed to be reunited with her husband and her children.
Totally traumatized, Papini soon told the police all about the ordeal she had experienced. She said she was out jogging when a van pulled up next to him and two Hispanic women forced her into the vehicle at gunpoint.
I speak of beatings and tortureand that they kept it chained to a post in a closet. He also showed a burn mark on his shoulder as punishment for trying to escape.
She was seen as lighter, she argued, because she lived rice, tortillas and sometimes apples.
He claimed that his captors they wore masks and they put ‘Really Annoying’ Mexican Music blaring and confessed that they planned to sell it “to a cop”.
But Papini had both male and female DNA in her that didn’t match up in CODIS, the national database in the United States.
Meanwhile, Papini was at home trying to rebuild his life with his family. He received $30,000 from the California Victim Compensation Boardclaimed more than $127,000 in disability benefits due to PTSD which he said he suffered and he has had others US$49,000 from one account GoFundMe.
Without arrests and doubts
Years passed and more no arreststhe case persisted with podcasts and publications raising uncomfortable hypotheses that had yet to be answered.
Investigators have always believed that Papini had not told the truth about his abduction. They were based on inconsistencies and details that seemed too exaggerated, expand local media.
In March 2020, nearly four years later, police made a breakthrough with male DNA found on Papini’s clothes. He linked it to a man close to him: a former boyfriend of Papini.
When asked, Papini’s ex did a surprising confession. She said she contacted him out of the blue and confessed to being abused by her husband.
The woman begged him to pick her up in a rental car and then stayed with him at his apartment in Costa Mesa, 1,000 kilometers away. They used payphones to make arrangements, they detail.
After three weeks, Papini said he wanted to go home to his kids, so she hurt herself and cut her own hair to make his story believable. Her version of events was supported by phone and rental car records and by a witness who saw her in Costa Mesa.
Papini was questioned, but she insisted her story was true. It was a complex task to secure the charges against Papini, but investigators were determined to do it expose their lies.
Fraud and arrest
In March 2022 Papini was arrested while her children were taking piano lessons. The charges were for false declarations to the Police Headquarters and postal fraudin connection with sending falsely earned money, a federal crime in the United States.
On the day of his arrest, Keith was separated from his wife. And the public was disappointed that they were deceived. Why would he make up such a story? The police concluded that only she wanted to spend time with her ex, away from her husband and children.
However, her ex insisted that while he thought they might get back together, they didn’t have sex during the time he was there. The doubts only multiplied.
Papini was released with a $120,000 bail after handing over his passport and faced up to 25 years in prison. six weeks later, he signed a plea deal admitting it was a hoax: he had made it all up.
Papini pleaded guilty and Keith petitioned for the divorce and sole custody of children.
Last September Papini was convicted. Prosecutors argued that he wasted public resources, that the police investigated innocent people and scared the community.
Papini declaration and sentence
“I am very sorry for the people who suffered because of me, those who sacrificed themselves for the broken woman she was. I am guilty of lying. I am guilty of dishonor. I am in front of you willing to accept. Repent and grant… what has been done cannot be undone. It can never be cancelled,” Papini said in a statement.
The judge called the 40-year-old American “manipulative” and claimed she needed to be punished to stop impersonators.
Papini was sentenced to 18 months in prison, followed by 36 months of supervised visits. He also received a fine of approximately 310,000 US dollars for the losses suffered by the Compensation Board, but the judge admitted that he was unlikely to be able to pay it.
They specifically recommended that he turn himself in to the authorities before 8 November.
Papini is a clever liar who has become a national sensation, first as a victim and then as a criminal.
Mary Ortiz is a seasoned journalist with a passion for world events. As a writer for News Rebeat, she brings a fresh perspective to the latest global happenings and provides in-depth coverage that offers a deeper understanding of the world around us.