Where is Keith Papini now? His secluded life

After Sherri Papini disappeared in 2016, leaving her two children at a daycare center, her husband, Keith Papini, insisted that she was ‘taken against her will’. Sherri reappeared three weeks later, claiming she was kidnapped by two Hispanic women who tortured and branded her. 

Papini gave a detailed account of the alleged kidnapping and provided sketches of her masked abductors, but the police suspected she was lying. Investigators ultimately discovered that Sherri had run off with an ex-boyfriend and fabricated a kidnapping story. 

Sherri pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud and one count of making false statements, earning an 18-month prison sentence. 

Keith is raising his children in California after filing for divorce

When the police called Sherri and Keith to discuss a breakthrough in the case, Keith seemed eager to find out who had caused his family so much anguish. Papini was shocked to learn that Sherri had staged her kidnapping and torture. 

As seen in ABC’s The Vanishing Act, Keith told investigators: “Now you are telling me, ‘Ok, you can go home now,’ Well, do you think I want her anywhere around my kids or around me at this point? I’m in shock.” Keith ruled out getting back together with Sherri. 

The couple separated before Keith filed for divorce. Keith asked for full custody of the children, claiming Sherri was ‘not in a position to provide good parenting’. According to the Associated Press, Keith wrote to the court:

“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.”

Papini said the children were traumatized by the loss of their mother. Shortly after Sherri reappeared in 2016, Keith appeared on 20/20 and detailed how difficult it was to explain to his then-4-year-old son that his mother was missing. “I just said, ‘Son, you know mommy went running and she didn’t come home.’ We just held each other,” Keith said. 

In his divorce filing, Keith said the children needed time away from Sherri’s constant lies. He wrote:

“The children have now learned that their mother lied to them about her disappearance, lied to them about how she was abused by two Hispanic women, and lied to them about her arrest. The fact that their mother lied to them on such a major issue is something they, and I, are having a hard time dealing with.”

Keith asked for custody because the children needed protection from Sherri’s notoriety. It’s unclear whether the court granted Keith full custody of Tyler and Violet. Nevertheless, he is raising them in Mountain Gate, California, away from the media spotlight. 

In May 2022, the Daily Mail photographed Keith on the way to work in California after dropping off the kids at school. According to the outlet, Keith asked the court to grant him the couple’s property and to relieve him of responsibility for Papini’s debts. 

Sherri started serving her sentence in November 2022 and owes $309,902 in restitution. 

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