Grand jury indicts Denise Huskins’ alleged kidnapper
A disbarred lawyer who is also an ex-Marine was indicted by a federal grand jury in Sacramento today on a charge of kidnaping a Vallejo woman in March, according to U.S. Attorney Benjamin Wagner.
Matthew Muller, 38, of Orangevale in Sacramento, will be arraigned on the indictment before a federal magistrate in Sacramento on Monday.
He is accused of breaking into a Mare Island home shared by physical therapists Denise Huskins and Aaron Quinn on March 23, abducting Huskins and holding her captive for two days before dropping her off near her mother’s house in Huntington Beach.
The single count of kidnapping is the same charge that was previously lodged in a criminal complaint filed by prosecutors on June 29, but the grand jury action clears the way for a future trial and makes it unnecessary for a magistrate to conduct a preliminary hearing for Muller.
The charge carries a possible maximum sentence of life in prison if Muller is convicted.
A cell phone Muller allegedly left behind during an attempted home invasion robbery in Dublin on June 5 led authorities to evidence allegedly linking him to the kidnapping.
Last month, Muller pleaded no contest and was convicted in Alameda County Superior Court on charges of attempted robbery, burglary and assault with a deadly weapon in the Dublin case.
Vallejo police initially said in March that they believed Huskins’ and Quinn’s account of the kidnapping was a hoax and that the couple had led police on a “wild goose chase.”
After Muller was charged in the federal criminal complaint, Police Chief Andrew Bidou sent the couple a letter of apology in July.
Wagner said in a statement Thursday:
“The bizarre circumstances of the events in Vallejo in March complicated the investigation of this matter. … But the Vallejo Police Department, the FBI, and our law enforcement allies in Alameda County have done excellent work in recent months to bring this investigation to a conclusion.”
Muller graduated from Harvard Law School and worked for a time as an immigration attorney. He was disbarred as a California lawyer earlier this year.