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In March 2015, Aaron Quinn and Denise Huskins were at home when a man broke in, drugged the couple and blindfolded them, before kidnapping Huskins. When Quinn went to the police for help, he was accused of making the story up and being responsible for Huskins’ disappearance, possibly her murder.
Years later, police would apologize for assuming Quinn and Huskins had made the story up and arrested Matthew Muller for the crime. On Friday, Muller was sentenced to 31 years in state prison for the crime.
Muller used a remote-controlled drone to spy on the couple, ABC News reported, before breaking into their home in the San Francisco Bay area on March 23, 2015. He used a fake gun to terrorize the couple, tied them up and forced them to drink a liquid that made them fall asleep, according to prosecutors. They were also blindfolded while Muller “played a pre-recorded message that made it seem as if there was more than one kidnapper,” ABC reported.
While Quinn was drugged, Muller put Huskins in the trunk of his car and drove her to his home in South Lake Tahoe. He kept Huskins there for two days, raping her, before driving her back to her hometown of Huntington Beach, California, near Los Angeles.
What made the case even more bizarre is that Muller “used an anonymous email address to send messages to a San Francisco reporter claiming that Huskins was abducted by a team of elite criminals who were practicing their tactics,” ABC reported.
When Huskins was found alive, police in Vallejo, California, investigated the kidnapping as a hoax, comparing it to the well-known book and movie “Gone Girl,” which is about a woman who goes missing and makes up a story about being kidnapped.
During detective Mat Mustard’s interrogation of Quinn, the law enforcement officer said “”The frogmen obviously didn’t do it, so who did it now, well it’s the guy that I’ve been sitting here talking to tonight. So now I get out my puzzle pieces and I start figuring it out, okay, how do I make it, so you look like a monster.”
Police eventually realized their mistake after they arrested Muller elsewhere in California for a similar home invasion.
“Authorities said they found a cellphone that they traced to Muller and a subsequent search of a car and home turned up evidence, including a computer Muller stole from Quinn, linking the disbarred attorney to the abduction,” ABC reported. “Investigators said they found videos of Muller arranging cameras in a bedroom and then recording himself twice sexually assaulting his blindfolded victim.”
Six years after the police treated Quinn and Huskins as liars, they apologized. A couple days later, Quinn and Huskins told ABC7 that “For so many years we had to stand by silently as the whole world had misinformed conversations and judgments about the worst moment of our life and who we are as people.”