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Sherri Papini's Husband Says He Was 'Traumatized' By Her Disappearance In Child Custody Paperwork

"Both I and, especially, our children were traumatized by her disappearance and I spent much time and money trying to find my wife," Keith Papini emphasizes in a declaration as he tries to get full custody of his and Sherri Papini's children.

By Gina Tron
Sherri Papini Accused Of Making Up 2016 Kidnapping Story

The husband of Sherri Papini, who recently admitted to making up an elaborate story that she was kidnapped in 2016 so she could spend time with her ex, says he was traumatized by her fake abduction, an assertion that comes as he seeks custody of their children amid divorce proceedings.

"The whole problem started in November 2016 when Sherri left our children at a daycare and simply disappeared. Both I and, especially, our children were traumatized by her disappearance and I spent much time and money trying to find my wife," Sherri’s husband Keith Papini wrote in a declaration for the Shasta County Family Court, obtained by the Sacramento Bee.

Earlier this month, Sherri admitted that her 2016 kidnapping was a hoax. The 39-year-old California mother had made national headlines that year when she claimed she had been kidnapped at gunpoint by two Hispanic women while out for a jog. When she was located three weeks after vanishing, she had a chain around her waist, had endured weight loss and had wounds on her body — now known to be self-inflicted. 

Sherri Papini Pd

Turns out, she was staying with an ex the entire time she pretended to be missing. The ex, who believed that he was rescuing Papini from her abusive husband, also branded her and hit her to assist her with the kidnapping story.

Last week, Keith Papini filed for divorce from Sherri, claiming he “must act decisively to protect my children from the trauma caused by their mother and bring stability and calm to their lives,” ABC affiliate KRCR reported.

He is filing for sole custody of the couple’s two children.

“The trauma inflicted on our children at the unexpected loss of their mother was heartbreaking," Keith wrote in his declaration, adding that the hoax has "kept life in turmoil" for the family. 

It also states that Sherri "has not been acting in a rational manner."

Previously, Keith publicly supported his wife’s claims that her weeks-long kidnapping was genuine, including in a 2016 exclusive interview with Good Morning America.

“Rumors, assumptions, lies, and hate have been both exhausting and disgusting. We are not going to allow those people to take away our spirit, love, or rejoice in our girl found alive and home where she belongs,” he said. “I understand people want the story, pictures, proof that this was not some sort of hoax, plan to gain money, or some fabricated race war. I do not see a purpose in addressing each preposterous lie.”