Man Who Kidnapped Woman Sentenced To 25 Years

A man has been sentenced for the kidnapping of a woman who was beaten and abandoned in the snow nearly naked last November in the cold woods east of Eskimo Hill. RPD Investigators say the victim was familiar with her captors, who accused her of stealing drugs. The ordeal began when the 25-year-old woman was forced into a van in the area of Mistletoe Lane and Victor Avenue by 34-year-old Johanna Knighton and 46-year-old Fred Sanderson. The victim was physically assaulted by Sanderson while Knighton drove the van east on Highway 44. They turned off the highway onto a seldom-used road in the Hat Creek area and drove about 6 miles into the forest. That’s where the victim was forced to remove her clothing and was left to fend for herself in winter weather with only a pair of shorts to wear. She had no idea where she was and had no way of getting help. As rain and snow fell and temperatures dropped with nightfall, the woman took shelter inside a burned out tree and tried to cover herself with wood chips. She was saved the next day when a group of people showed up in the area looking for a Christmas tree. Suffering from exposure and frostbite, the victim was transported to a Redding hospital. Knighton and Sanderson were arrested in the days that followed. Last month they both reached plea deals with prosecutors. Knighton was sentenced to 14 years 8 months in state prison. Wednesday Sanderson was sentenced to 25 years.


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