Denise Huskins' Alleged Kidnapping: What We Know About California 'Gone Girl' Case

Calif. woman's alleged kidnappers' email said they mistook her for someone else.

ByABC News
March 31, 2015, 1:42 PM

— -- The alleged kidnapping of a California physical therapist who reappeared unharmed days after she was reported taken has left people wondering if it was all a hoax.

As more information pours in about Denise Huskins' alleged kidnapping -- including emails purportedly from the kidnappers -- the 29-year-old and her boyfriend, Aaron Quinn, remain under the microscope.

Here is what we know so far about the case:

The Alleged Abduction

On the afternoon of March 23, Quinn, 30, called 911 to report that Huskins had been abducted from his Vallejo, California, home hours earlier, at approximately 3:30 a.m. On March 25, Huskins was found safe in Huntington Beach, California, police said.

Quinn's attorney, Dan Russo, has said that Quinn was tied up and drugged by at least two assailants the day his girlfriend was taken, which he said explains why Quinn was unable to call police until hours later.

Police said that Quinn told investigators that Huskins' abductors made a $8,500 ransom demand.

Denise Huskins, 29, was found in Huntington Beach, California, police confirmed to ABC News.

The Emails

Russo said Friday that the alleged kidnappers sent a six-page email to his office detailing their motive.

"These people are real," he told ABC News. "They're really motivated."

Russo declined to specify further what was said in the six-page email.

Both police and the San Francisco Chronicle said last week that they received emails allegedly from Huskins' kidnappers. While police declined to detail the specifics of the email, the newspaper reported it received an email from an "anonymous person claiming to be holding Denise Huskins."

Douglas Rappaport, the attorney for Denise Huskins, is seen in a still made from video during a press conference in Vallejo, Calif., March 30, 2015.

The newspaper later reported that it received another lengthy email from a person claiming to be one of the kidnappers that said the abduction was real.

Douglas Rappaport, Huskins' attorney, said he received a “15-page, single-spaced email” from the kidnappers apologizing for their actions.

“They talk very extensively about how they prepared for it, what weapons to use,” Rappaport said in an exclusive interview with ABC News, referring to the email.

Rappaport said the email was sent to the San Francisco Chronicle after Huskins turned up safe March 25. He declined to say how he got the email or show its contents, but ABC News was able to view it from another source.

In the email, the group compares itself to the crew from the movie “Ocean’s 11,” calling themselves college-educated career criminals who only nabbed Huskins as a dry run so they could kidnap higher-profile victims in the future.

“They felt terribly when they discovered it was her, but since this was a training mission, they decided to carry it out regardless,” Rappaport said.

According to the email, the kidnappers felt so bad, they simply let Huskins go, dropping her off in her hometown of Huntington Beach, where they thought she would be safe.

Members of the media gather at a location where Denise Huskins, a woman who was reported missing, was found safe in Huntington Beach, Calif., on March 25, 2015.

Was It a Hoax?

Police in Vallejo said March 25 that they found "no evidence to support the claims" that Huskins was abducted from Quinn's home.

Huskins and Quinn have denied any involvement in a hoax through their attorneys.

"She is absolutely unequivocally, 100 percent, positively a victim and [there is] no 'hoax,'" said Rappaport. "She's distraught, she's emotionally and physically broken."

In the days following Huskins’ re-appearance, Vallejo Police Lt. Kenny Park voiced doubts about the kidnapping.

“The fact that we wasted all these resources for essentially nothing is really upsetting,” Park said.

Vallejo police said in a statement that it would request either state or federal charges "if evidence indicates that either Ms. Huskins or Mr. Quinn have committed a criminal act."

But Huskins' attorney said, "I'm assuming that any police officer or any district attorney will see there is no basis whatsoever to file charges."

A police officer stands at the location where Denise Huskins, who had been reported missing, was found in Huntington Beach, Calif., March 25, 2015.

The Investigation

Police have questioned both Quinn and Huskins. At this point, law enforcement and the FBI both remain tight-lipped about the ongoing investigation.