Woman reported kidnapped found safe after mysterious ordeal

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. (AP) — A woman whose boyfriend reported that intruders abducted her from their San Francisco Bay Area home and held her for ransom was found safe Wednesday at her father's Southern California apartment.

Denise Huskins' father, Mike Huskins, said his daughter called him around 9:30 a.m. to say she'd been dropped off at her mother's house in Huntington Beach. No one was home so she told him she walked the 12 blocks to his home near the beach.

"She wasn't crying at all. She just said, "Daddy, I'm OK," the emotional father told The Associated Press.

Her return capped a bizarre ordeal that began Monday when her boyfriend told police she was forcefully taken in the middle of the night from their home in the San Francisco Bay Area suburb of Vallejo.

On Tuesday, the San Francisco Chronicle received an email from an anonymous person claiming to be holding the 29-year-old woman.

The person wrote that she would be returned safely Wednesday, the newspaper reported.

"We will send a link to her location after she has been dropped off. She will be in good health and safe while she waits," the email read. "Any advance on us or our associates will create a dangerous situation for Denise. Wait until she is recovered and then proceed how you will. We will be ready."

The email included an audio file of a woman identifying herself as Denise Huskins, who mentioned Tuesday's airliner crash in the French Alps to verify she was alive. Mike Huskins confirmed the voice in the file was his daughter's, the Chronicle reported.

The father told the AP that he and his ex-wife were in Vallejo when their daughter turned up Wednesday about 400 miles south in Huntington Beach.

A neighbor met Denise Huskins at her father's house and called authorities.

Mike Huskins said he knew nothing about a ransom but has no doubt his daughter was really kidnapped.

"No ransom was ever discussed with me, but police aren't telling me everything that they heard," he said. "It's going to take a while before it all sorts out, I think."

For now, he said, he's just happy to know his daughter is safe.

"I feel very relieved. Can you imagine? You can't unless you've experienced it," he said. "I don't recommend this experience for anybody."

The father said he was not headed back to Huntington Beach immediately because Vallejo police still wanted to speak with him.

His daughter's boyfriend, Aaron Quinn, called police at about 2 p.m. Monday to report she was abducted from the Mare Island home they share in Vallejo.

It's unclear why Quinn, 30, took so long to alert authorities.

A car registered to him was taken from the couple's home and found at an undisclosed location, investigators said.

Police wouldn't reveal further details about the case but said Quinn was not a person of interest.

Denise Huskins works as a physical therapist at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Vallejo. She moved to the area in June from Southern California.

Her uncle Jeff Kane also said he believes she was abducted. He described Denise Huskins as a person of sterling character, saying she is career-oriented, independent and strong.

"She's a good girl, not into any bad things," he said.


Associated Press writer Scott Smith in Fresno and AP researcher Jennifer Farrar in New York contributed to this report.