Nearly a year ago, on November 2, 2016, Sherri Papini was kidnapped just one mile from her Northern California home. Her husband Keith knew something was wrong the moment he came home from work to an empty house.

The then 34-year-old, nicknamed “Super Mom,” was nowhere to be found; she even missed picking her two children up from day care, according to ABC News’s “20/20.”

Keith began tracking her iPhone and was horrified to find it on the side of the road, in the grass, along with her headphones and some strands of her long blonde hair.

From there, the search for his missing wife was an excruciating race against time for Keith. He realized the more people who heard about his wife’s disappearance, the more people would assist in finding her, so Keith did press appearance after press appearance to spread the word.

After countless search parties and police visits, however, Keith began losing hope he would ever see his wife again:

But three weeks after she first disappeared, Papini was found. On Thanksgiving morning, a woman was spotted on the side of the road approximately 150 miles from where she was taken, weighing just 87 pounds, as Independent Journal Review previously reported.

According to reports, she was covered with bruises, burns, branded, and her long blonde locks had been chopped off. She was also bound by chains when she was discovered.

Her story was one that shook the nation.

After flagging down a passing vehicle, she was immediately taken to receive medical attention and was soon reunited with her desperate husband.

With her return, however, people seemingly expected all the questions surrounding her case to be answered. Nearly one year later, there are still far more questions than answers.

Sherri told police that she was kidnapped by two armed Hispanic women driving an SUV, but that’s still practically the only concrete information that was released to the public.


Aside from the fact that she was held captive at an unknown location, physically abused, and hardly fed, essentially no information has been released regarding why she was taken and let go.

Now, police are revealing that despite the description of two female kidnappers, officials have found male DNA on Papini’s clothes. According to the New York Daily News, police also discovered that prior to Papini’s disappearance, she’d been texting with a man from Michigan about meeting up in California. That man was later ruled out by detectives.

Papini also told investigators that while fighting with one of the alleged women who took her, she cut her foot. Shasta County Sgt. Brian Jackson, however, told the Record Searchlight:

“When she was being processed at the hospital … no evidence of a cut was seen in the photographs.”

Although a cloud of mystery still remains around Papini’s disappearance and, thankfully, reappearance, one thing’s for sure: Whatever the circumstances, her family is glad that she’s back home with them.

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