Kidnapped California supermom and her family abruptly flee their family home –
leaving their dogs behind – as cops hut for hispanic women who snatched her
Sherri Papini, 34, and her family have fled their Redding, California home
According to one neighbor they are living up north with ‘wealthy relatives’
*’I don’t think they’re ever coming back here again,’ said another neighbor
*The family left behind their two dogs, who are being walked daily by one of husband Keith’s friends
*It has now been almost two weeks since Sherri was found safe after being held captive for 22 days
*Investigators are still looking into the case to try and figure out what happened to the month of two
*She has told police that two Hispanic women kidnapped here, but police have still been unable to locate her captors
Sherri Papini and her family have left their home in Redding, California and moved to an undisclosed location in the wake of her abduction.
In an interview with ABC News Sherri Papini’s husband revealed that it was too difficult for his wife to be at the home given what happened to her in the 22 days that she was held captive, and that he was not sure that they would ever return to the house.
Keith said this while being interviewed for an episode of 20/20 that was aired last Friday, and conducted at a secret location.
Meanwhile, the family decided to also leave their dogs behind when they skipped town.
A friend of Keith’s was spotted at the Papini’s house on Saturday by the New York Post and said he was there to walk the family’s two dogs while they were away.
‘I don’t think they’re ever coming back here again,’ said one neighbor.
Another neighbor meanwhile said that the couple and their two children were ‘way up north’ with ‘wealthy relatives.’
It has now been almost two weeks since Sherri was released by her captors, and there are still many questions that remain unanswered in the case.
Sherri is also having difficulty describing the two women who held her captive because in addition to keeping her isolated and shackled in a basement they also covered her head with a hood, making it hard for her to see anything but their eyes.
Sherri was also starved, beaten, branded and brutalized by the two Hispanic women, who remain at large and are armed according to police.
Keith also detailed the ‘very mixed emotions’ he felt when he heard his wife’s voice for the first time during his interview.
He said that he received a call from the police officer who arrived on the scene after his wife was released by her captors on a California freeway, and in the background he could hear his wife screaming his name.
‘It’s very emotional. And, “I love you, I love you, I love you, Oh my God, you’re here. You’re back. Where are you?”‘ said Keith.
The phone was then taken away from Sherri said Keith while officer attempted to keep her calm as he tried to understand what had happened to the 34-year-old mother of two.
‘I’m panicked but I’m happy because at this point this is the first time I’ve heard her voice,’ said Keith.
‘I know she’s alive.’
The Shasta County Sheriff’s Department is still looking for clues to determine why Sherri was targeted and the motive of her kidnappers in their ongoing investigation.
Bill Garcia, a private detective who has been looking into the case, said in an interview with Today last week that he believes that Sherri may have been sex trafficking victim.
‘I suspect based on the types of injuries Sherri incurred, the beatings, the broken nose, the cut hair, especially the chains and the branding, indicate that most likely it was one of these sex trafficking groups,’ said Garcia.
When asked about sex trafficking being a possible motive Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko would only say: ‘We don’t know if this was related to any cartel or sex trafficking.’
Sheriff Bosenko told DailyMail.com on Wednesday: ‘Right now we have no known reason why she was abducted, we do not know if she was specifically targeted or if this was a random abduction.
‘It’s still an active and ongoing investigation and we’re still looking for the reasons or the motive for this abduction.
‘Abductions are generally rare, especially in this area, but I mean in general an adult abduction is an unusual occurrence.’
He also spoke about the fact that Sherri’s captors branded her with some sort of message, which neither he nor her husband Keith with share details about.
‘I would think that that was some sort of either an exertion of power and control and or maybe some type of message that the brand contained,’ said Sheriff Bosenko earlier this week.
‘It is not a symbol, but it was a message.’
Keith previously revealed that his wife’s captors kept her in restraints at all times, whether she was inside the house or out with them in a vehicle.
‘She had a metal chain around her waist. She had a bag over her head,’ said Keith.
‘She was chained anytime she was in a vehicle. They opened the door… they cut something, freed her restraints that were holding her in the vehicle and they pushed her out.’
They even kept her chained up after releasing her on the side of the road at around 4am on the morning of Thanksgiving.
Police said the women may be travelling in a dark SUV and that the younger of the two has long curly hair and a thick accent. She also has pierced ears and thin eyebrows.
Keith said his wife told him that she screamed until she was ‘coughing up blood’ trying to get a motorist to stop before realizing that her chains might be scaring them away because it looked like she had broken out of prison.
After she realized this Sherri hid the chains and was able to flag down a driver according to Keith.
He made his first statement to the media about his wife’s disappearance earlier this week after spending the weekend alone with his family.
In addition to describing her injuries, he also lashed out at those who have implied that his wife is lying about the kidnapping.
‘Rumors, assumptions, lies, and hate have been both exhausting and disgusting. Those people should be ashamed of their malicious, sub human behavior,’ said Keith in the statement, which was released just four days after his wife was found safe.
‘We are not going to allow those people to take away our spirit, love, or rejoice in our girl found alive and home where she belongs.’
He later stated: ‘I do not see a purpose in addressing each preposterous lie. Instead, may I give you a glimpse of the mixture of horror and elation that was my experience of reuniting with the love of my life and mother of our children.’
Sherri was reported missing by Keith after going out for a jog near their home in Redding on November 2 and failing to return.
Keith said he first grew concerned when he learned that his wife had failed to pick up their two children from daycare.
He traced her discarded iPhone to the side of the road about a mile from their home where he found it tossed on the ground with her running ‘ear buds’.
A missing persons appeal was launched soon after, with posters littering the local town of Mountain Gate and scores of social media pleas for Sherri’s return.
Within days Sherri’s disappearance had become a national news story.
Keith was later named as a potential person of interest in the case but ruled out when he passed a lie detector test.
In an interview with DailyMaill.com on Monday, California resident Christine Everson revealed that she spotted a woman who looked remarkably similar to Sherri just two days before she was found last week.
Everson said that she was at a rest stop on the outskirts of Redding, just miles away from Sherri’s home, when she noticed a woman looking ‘scared’ while sitting in the passenger side of a vehicle.
She attempted to speak with the woman, who she described as ‘subdued,’ but could not get her to engage in a conversation.
At one point she even asked the woman point blank if she was Sherri, but did not get a response.
Everson said she later called police to report the possible sighting, and it is unclear if they followed up on her tip.
The woman that Everson saw was in a dark SUV, just like the one police have stated they are searching for, but was with two men and not two women.
Everson also noted that while her hair was unwashed, it had not been chopped off, and there were no visible marks or bruises on her face or body.
She also revealed that she believes her senses were heightened in the moment due to the fact that she was also abducted as a young girl.
Another red flag she revealed was the fact that the men had both left the vehicle while the woman remained inside.
Everson described the driver of the blue truck as around 5ft 6’/5ft 7’ tall, wearing a beanie, jeans, dark shoes and a dark jacket.
She said he was Latino in appearance, but lighter skinned.
The second man was tall and was wearing Jeans and tennis shoes. He was Caucasian and had reddish/brown hair.
Sherri was found roughly 36 hours later, 150 miles south of that rest stop in the town of Woodland.
From there she was transported back to Redding to receive medical treatment.
Keith shared the shock he felt when he finally saw Sherri later that day in his statement on Monday, and the extent of her injuries.
‘My first sight was my wife in a hospital bed, her face covered in bruises ranging from yellow to black because of the repeated beatings, the bridge of her nose broken,’ said Keith.
‘Her now emaciated body of 87 pounds was covered in multi colored bruises, severe burns, red rashes, and chain markings. Her signature long, blonde hair had been chopped off.’
He then added: ‘She has been branded and I could feel the rise of her scabs under my fingers.’
Keith will be sharing more details about his wife’s kidnapping and the ongoing investigation into why she was targeted on 20/20, airing Friday
Keith Papini Statement on Wife Sherri Kidnapping
Keith Papini gave a statement to Good Morning America on Tuesday:
The first thing I would like to address is the overwhelming amount of gratitude our entire family has for the thousands of people that have been on this torturous journey with us. I cannot possibly name each and every person, although their names are eternally etched in our hearts.
Thank you to our strong family, devoted friends, the entire Redding community, and countless communities around the world. Specific thanks to the Shasta County Sheriff’s department, FBI, NorCal Alliance for the Missing, The Lost Coast Trackers, Shasta Support Services, The Guardian Angels, my own personal A-Team, Cameron Gamble, Cody Salfen, Jim Linnan, Sean Ditty, Don Armstrong, Yolo County Sheriff’s department and hospital, the medical personnel that helped our dear Sherri, social media, and many news outlets.
Thank you to LRT Graphics and Signarama. Thank you to the extremely generous, anonymous as well as named donors all over the world whom selflessly gave to our family. Thank you to the many incredible humans that have never known Sherri that facilitated in sharing our heart break across the globe.
Sherri has always captured my heart and it is no surprise that she has captured the hearts not only through the country, but throughout the world. Thank you, truly, immensely, sincerely, and with my entire heart.
Secondly, we live in a nation of free speech, accompanied with an era of technology that provides immediate gratification. This is a double edged sword. I am grateful for this system as it is what spread my wife’s face quickly throughout the world, gaining the attention of thousands. The unfortunate side is that some people have been sitting in angering, expectant, positions waiting for the gory details
Rumors, assumptions, lies, and hate have been both exhausting and disgusting. Those people should be ashamed of their malicious, sub human behavior. We are not going to allow those people to take away our spirit, love, or rejoice in our girl found alive and home where she belongs. I understand people want the story, pictures, proof that this was not some sort of hoax, plan to gain money, or some fabricated race war. I do not see a purpose in addressing each preposterous lie. Instead, may I give you a glimpse of the mixture of horror and elation that was my experience of reuniting with the love of my life and mother of our children.
Nothing could have prepared me for what I was about to see upon my arrival at the hospital, nor the details of the true hell I was about to hear. The mental prison I was in over the past three weeks was shattered when my questions of my wife’s reality became known.
The officers warned me to brace myself. My first sight was my wife in a hospital bed, her face covered in bruises ranging from yellow to black because of repeated beatings, the bridge of her nose broken.
Her now emaciated body of 87 pounds was covered in multi colored bruises, severe burns, red rashes, and chain markings. Her signature long, blonde hair had been chopped off. She has been branded and I could feel the rise of her scabs under my fingers. She was thrown from a vehicle with a chain around her waist, attached to her wrists and a bag over her head. The same bag she used to flag someone down once she was able to free one of her hands. Sherri was taken from us for 22 days, and suffered incredibly through both intense physical agony and severe mental torture. My reaction was one of extreme happiness and overwhelming nausea as my eyes and hands scanned her body. I was filled with so much relief and revulsion at once. My Sherri suffered tremendously and all the visions swirling in your heads of her appearance, I assure you, are not as graphic and gruesome as the reality.
We are a very private family whom do not use social media outlets prior to this grotesque tragedy. My love for my wife took precedents and it was clear we had to be exposed in ways we never would have been comfortable with. So please have a heart and understand why we have asked for our privacy. This will be along road of healing for everyone. Ultimately, it was Sherri’s will to survive that brought her home. Thank you.