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Missing Calif. woman was 'battered and bruised' when found, officials say

Sherri Papini was found alive on Thanksgiving 2016 after almost a month missing. 
Sherri Papini 

The FBI released sketches of the two suspects in the Sherri Papini case on Wednesday, as the first anniversary of the Redding woman's disappearance and recovery on Thanksgiving Day nears. Meanwhile, the Shasta County Sheriff's Office also released more details on her captivity.

Papini, then 34, was found alive on Thanksgiving 2016 after almost a month missing. Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko has said she told investigators two women held her captive. Sgt. Brian Jackson said the two women are the only people she had contact with in her 22 days missing.

First: angles.

Jackson said one of the angles detectives pursued was Papini's alleged relationship with a "male acquaintance from Michigan." Jackson said Papini planned to meet the man when he came to California for business just days before she disappeared, but Jackson said they later determined he wasn't involved in her disappearance.

Jackson also shed more light on the condition Papini was in when she was found on the side of the road in Yolo County, and what happened while she was gone — including a fight Papini said she had with one of the captors.

Jackson said Papini told a forensic interviewer that she slammed her younger captor's head into a toilet when she was allowed to leave her captivity room for a shower. Jackson said Papini told the interviewer that she cut on the side of her right foot in the process, but "when she was being processed at the hospital ... no evidence of a cut was seen in the photographs."

Papini told investigators that she otherwise avoided looking the women in the face so that they wouldn't beat her, Jackson said.

Officials did find DNA from two people on Papini, Jackson said — a man and a woman. Jackson said the woman's DNA came from Papini's body, while the man's came from her clothes.

She was branded on her right shoulder and "appeared battered and bruised," but Jackson said there is no evidence to indicate Papini was sexually assaulted, and she said she was not. He she her bruises indicated Papini "had been physically assaulted multiple times over a period of time."

As for the brand, Jackson said the message is still unclear because of "obscure letters."

"The quality of the brand is poor," Jackson said.

Jackson also said Papini's hair was cut to shoulder-length. Officials initially said her hair was cut, but did not reveal to what length.

Papini said that right before she was released, the two captors were arguing and then she heard a gunshot, Jackson said. The younger of the women then escorted Papini out of a room and dumped her on the side of the road, Jackson said Papini told investigators.

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