Couple in 'Gone Girl' kidnapping case on cops accusing them of hoax: They 'made it strange'

The couple at the center of a bizarre kidnapping case called a hoax.

March 16, 2018, 6:22 PM

Denise Huskins, the woman in the so-called 2015 “Gone Girl” kidnapping case in California, is speaking out three years after the terrifying ordeal, including about the moment she thought she was going to die.

"I could tell that it was dark. I couldn't hear other people around. When he opened the car door I thought, like, 'This is -- this is it.' Like, either I'm going to hear a gunshot and that's it, or I'm going to get pushed off a cliff. I thought I was walking to my death,” she told ABC News. “Then I heard a door close behind me. And I pulled up the blindfold. And I saw a toilet and a cement room. And I thought, ‘Oh God. He is going to release me.’ But until that point I'm like, ‘He's just saying this,’ and I was just expecting at any moment it was over.”

Denise Huskins and her now-fiancé, Aaron Quinn, both sat down with ABC News’ Amy Robach for their first-ever interview since the 2015 incident they say ruined their lives and unfairly destroyed their reputations.

Watch the full exclusive interview on “Good Morning America” Monday at 7 a.m. ET.

PHOTO: Lawyer Anthony Douglas Rappaport speaks at a news conference with his clients, Denise Huskins and her boyfriend Aaron Quinn, right, in San Francisco, Sept. 29, 2016.
Lawyer Anthony Douglas Rappaport speaks at a news conference with his clients, Denise Huskins and her boyfriend Aaron Quinn, right, in San Francisco, Sept. 29, 2016. Matthew Muller, a disbarred Harvard University-trained attorney plead guilty Thursday to kidnapping Huskins in a bizarre case that police in California initially dismissed as a hoax.
Sudhin Thanawala/AP

Three years ago in the early morning hours of March 23, 2015, Huskins and Quinn, her then-boyfriend, claimed they were victims of a terrifying home invasion in Vallejo, California, that led to Huskins being kidnapped and held for ransom for 48 hours.

The Vallejo Police Department at first portrayed their claims as a hoax, which earned the case an unfair comparison to the popular novel and 2014 movie "Gone Girl."

But Huskins said what actually happened was she was bound, drugged, kidnapped, and raped twice by her kidnapper before she was ultimately released in Huntington Beach, California.

PHOTO: This undated file photo released by the Vallejo Police Department shows Denise Huskins.
This undated file photo released by the Vallejo Police Department shows Denise Huskins.
Vallejo Police Department via AP

Quinn had been drugged during the home invasion before he contacted police. During the 48 hours when Huskins was gone, Quinn said police unfairly turned their focus on him as a suspect instead of searching for the real perpetrator.

Police denounced the couple's story and said they found "no evidence to support the claims" that Huskins was abducted, calling it a waste of valuable police resources.

That was until Matthew Muller, a 38-year-old Harvard-educated lawyer and former Marine, was arrested for another home invasion robbery in nearby Dublin, California, that displayed similarities to Huskin's case. He was later charged with Huskins’ kidnapping as well. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 40 years in prison in March 2017.

PHOTO: Police in Dublin, Calif. released this June 9, 2015 booking photo of Matthew Muller, 38, the suspect in a home invasion that occurred on June 5, 2015.
Police in Dublin, Calif. released this June 9, 2015 booking photo of Matthew Muller, 38, the suspect in a home invasion that occurred, June 5, 2015.
Dublin Police Services

The couple remains convinced there were multiple kidnappers beyond Muller who may still be out there.

Huskins and Quinn sued the city and members of the police department, claiming they were defamed by the police department and suffered emotional distress due to the investigation. The city settled the case this month awarding the couple $2.5 million in damages. The city does not admit any wrongdoing as part of the settlement.

“This is only strange because the law enforcement made it strange,” Quinn told ABC News. “This was people who broke into my home, threatened my family, threatened to hurt the person they kidnapped, charged a ransom. And if you just look at it that way, it was a kidnapping. They got distracted by other things. And they made it strange. If they came out and said, ‘This is a kidnapping,’ followed the evidence, got Denise back no one would be talking about ‘Gone Girl’ or anything like that. They're the ones who made it strange.”

Watch the full exclusive interview on “Good Morning America” Monday at 7 a.m. ET.

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