Is it a hoax or not?
An attorney for Denise Huskins, the woman who police say "orchestrated" a story of kidnapping for ransom with her boyfriend, says no.
Her attorney, Douglas L. Rappaport, told the Los Angeles Times that his client was kidnapped.
"She is emotionally and physically broken and the fact that she has been designated as a suspect only hurts her further," he said.
Huskins was a "victim of a violent crime and to a certain degree is being re-victimized" by investigators, Rappaport said.
Huskins was reported kidnapped from her boyfriend’s home early Monday for an $8,500 ransom. She reappeared Wednesday in Huntington Beach, where she said she was dropped off by her kidnappers.
At a news conference Thursday, Rappaport denounced investigators' claims that Huskins made it up.
“They are absolutely wrong,” he said. “A lot of people said the world was flat as well.”
Vallejo police, he said, “very quickly threw her under the bus.”
Huskins, who police say disappeared after her safe return, met Thursday with the FBI and Vallejo police and was questioned for hours as she provided details about her reported kidnapping.
Rappaport says he hopes Huskins will be exonerated, and will "do whatever it takes to clear her name."
"Hopefully this will come to an end for her," he said.
Meanwhile, police said Huskins’ story doesn’t add up.
Calling the kidnapping an “orchestrated event,” police said Huskins and her boyfriend, Aaron Quinn, could face charges once their investigation is completed.
Her boyfriend, Aaron Quinn, told police Huskins had been “forcibly taken against her will” from his home, and the ransom demand had been communicated to him.
His attorneys said Quinn didn’t report the kidnapping for roughly 10 hours because the kidnappers had bound and drugged him.
After reporting the abduction to police, he was interrogated for 17 hours by FBI and police, his attorneys said. He provided blood samples to prove he was drugged and gave them his passwords to his email accounts.
Then on Wednesday, Huskins reappeared, 420 miles south in Huntington Beach. But hours after Huskins turned up, police said they began to question whether there ever was a kidnapping.
The FBI arranged to fly Huskins to Northern California for an interview, but she never got on the flight, police said. She later retained an attorney.
“This was not a random act and ... the members of our community are safe and ... have nothing to fear,” Vallejo Police Lt. Kenny Park said.
But Quinn’s attorneys insisted Thursday Huskins was kidnapped and a ransom demand was made.
“There seems to be a stream of blatant lies about our client, about the victim and about what is going on,” his attorney Dan Russo said Thursday.
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