Authorities say a California jogger who claims she was abducted, chained and found badly beaten weeks later on Thanksgiving is likely telling the truth.
“We currently have no reason to disbelieve Sherri Papini’s story,” Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko said of Sherri, a 34-year-old mother of two, ABC News reports. “She was assaulted and had injuries which she was treated for.”
Sherri says she was abducted while out for a jog on Nov. 2. She was supposed to meet her husband later in the evening, the Ventura County Star reports.
“He returned to the home later in the evening, around 5, and no one was here,” 36-year-old Sheila Koester, Sherri's sister, said. “He called the authorities immediately.”
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All authorities could find of Sherri after that day were here cellphone, earbuds and a strand of her hair. This revelation worried and upset her loved ones.
“I would say my personal reaction is that it’s twofold,” Suzanne Papini, Sherri's sister-in-law, said. “One, is that is it’s good to have some sort of clue. The other portion is that it really points to she’s been taken. I mean, she wouldn’t just drop her phone if she was running away. So, at least it’s giving us some kind of information, but it’s pretty -- we’re sick. This is a pretty sickening situation.”
Three weeks later, on Thanksgiving Day, she was finally found on a road, injured and bound, 150 miles away from her home in Redding, California, the New York Post reports.
“We are overwhelmed with joy of how supportive everyone has been to help bring us together as a family again,” Sherri and her husband, Ken Papini, said.
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“Everyone’s tireless efforts has made our family whole again this Thanksgiving,” they added. “Thank you for allowing our family time to heal.”
Authorities are now “looking for a dark-colored SUV with two Hispanic females armed with a handgun.”
Police also say they are currently looking into Sherri's past -- which includes a divorce -- and her online activity for further clues that might help them find the perpetrators.