New Evidence Unveiled in Weird California Kidnap Case

Male, female DNA was recovered from Sherri Papini
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 26, 2017 3:24 AM CDT
Updated Oct 26, 2017 6:41 AM CDT
New Evidence Unveiled in Weird Calif. Kidnap Case
This sketch released by the FBI shows one of two suspects in the mysterious case of a young mother who was found battered and bruised but alive along a freeway after she was missing for three weeks.   (FBI via AP)

Authorities have released new details in the Sherri Papini case, almost a year after the California mother of two young children vanished after going for a jog. She disappeared on Nov. 2 last year and was next seen 22 days later, when she flagged down a passing car 150 miles south of her Redding home. She had been beaten and shackled and weighed just 87 pounds. On Wednesday, police released sketches of the two Spanish-speaking women that Papini says abducted her, People reports. "It has taken time for Sherri to recover to a point to be able to provide accurate details to the sketch artist," the Shasta County Sheriff's Office said. Police also revealed that although Papini said she was kidnapped by two women, a man's DNA was recovered from her clothing and a woman's DNA from her body.

Sgt. Brian Jackson says the male DNA didn't match that of Papini's husband. He tells the Sacramento Bee that Papini was branded with "obscure letters" on her right shoulder during the disappearance. Jackson says the information is being released now in the hope of generating new leads. No evidence of sexual assault was found, and authorities haven't disclosed a possible motive for the alleged kidnapping. Authorities say a male acquaintance from Michigan that Papini had been texting in the days before her disappearance is not a suspect, the Los Angeles Times reports. Papini and her husband, Keith Papini, have both passed polygraph tests, police say. (A 2003 police report raised suspicions about the disappearance.)

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