California Mom Has Been Arrested For Faking Her Own Kidnapping

Good Morning America

In 2016, Redding, California resident Sherri Papini was a stay at home mom. Her husband, Keith Papini, supported his wife and their two children with his job at Best Buy

One day, Sherri didn’t pick up her children from school. That’s when Keith started to worry that something was wrong. He knew she had gone jogging earlier in the day, so he went to search for her. He only found her cell phone and ear buds. She had left her purse at home, but she was nowhere to be found.

Keith called 911. He was worried about his wife and desperately wanted to find her. That’s when a 22-day search began to find Sherri.

On Thanksgiving Day, Sherri was miraculously found along the side of the road. Her arms and legs were bound, and she looked like she had been beaten up. Keith was thankful that she was alive, but he was also worried about her.

Sherri told authorities that she had been kidnapped. She had a detailed story that she stuck to, but it was later discovered that she had been lying and was never kidnapped at all. Now, she is facing up to 25 years in jail.

Watch the video below to learn more about this California mom who faked her own kidnapping.

In a statement, U.S. Attorney Phillip Talbert, explained that Sherri faking her own kidnapping was a big problem for multiple reasons. For staters, her disappearance caused other people in the community to fear for their own safety. In addition, the resources used to search for her and her captors “could have been used to investigate actual crime, protect the community, and provide resources to victims” instead of being “wasted.”

Because of Sherri’s lies, she received approximately $30,000 from the California Victim’s Compensation Board to pay for things like the ambulance ride to the hospital and meeting with a therapist. In addition, a GoFundMe campaign raised $49,000 for the family which they used to pay expenses and bills. All of this money was given in good faith to a woman who was flat out lying about what happened.

It turns out that Sherri was actually staying with an old boyfriend in Orange County, California. He picked her up in Redding and later drove her back to Northern California. They used prepaid cell phones to communicate.

Why Sherri pretended to be kidnapped to cover up her trip to Orange County with an ex-boyfriend is unclear. Why she decided to return just weeks later is also unclear.

Sherri is charged with mail fraud in relation to reimbursement expenses, and that charge has a sentence of up to 20 years in prison. In addition, she is also charged with lying to a federal officer. That charge holds a sentence of up to 5 years in prison.

Do you think Sherri will end up going to jail? Why do you think she said she was kidnapped? Does it surprise you that her husband is standing by her side even after finding out she lied to him and was with an old boyfriend?