Schanda Handley Recounts Harrowing 2017 Kidnapping Orchestrated by Husband in New '48 Hours'

In 2017, Schanda Handley thought she was opening the front door for a delivery. Instead, she was kidnapped and forced into a van at gunpoint. She survived thanks to the actions of a police officer who saw the van on the way home from work.

Schanda Handley is speaking out about her 2017 kidnapping in a new episode of “48 Hours.”

The Louisiana mom was at home with her daughter when she opened the door for a delivery. Instead, two men handcuffed and forced her into a van at gunpoint. Handley’s daughter, Isabella, says she was stunned.

“I said, ‘I have valuables, I have jewelry, I have cash, I have precious metal. I can get you money.’ Didn’t interest them at all,’” Handley says in a promo for the new episode. 

Handley’s nightmare grew worse when she was dragged into the van with no windows. 

“My heart sunk. I was like, we’re on an interstate or something,” Handley said. The kidnappers then removed her clothes and put pills in her mouth, she said.

As Handley’s worst fears were playing out, an Iberville Parish sheriff’s deputy Chad Martin was heading home from work and noticed the driver of the van acting suspicious. “He’s following this vehicle. He sees them dart out in front of him and go in the median,” CBS News lead correspondent David Begnaud tells Inside Edition.

“It didn't sit right with me, so I got in behind ‘em and put my emergency lights and sirens on,” Martin says.

The driver of the van tried to flee, but became stuck on a muddy road outside Lafayette. 

“I opened the rear van, and in the van, what I thought was a mannequin moved. I said, ‘Oh my God, things aren’t always what they seem,’” Martin says. 

Authorities later discovered that Schanda’s estranged husband, millionaire Michael Handley, was behind it all. 

“As soon as Schanda Handley was found, people started getting texts and videos of Michael. It looked like he was bound, gagged, bleeding. Had he been kidnapped by the bad guys, too? It was all part of his ruse,” Begnaud said.

Schanda Handley later found surveillance footage of Michael, essentially planning the entire thing, according to prosecutors. 

Michael Handley pleaded guilty to second-degree kidnapping and was sentenced to 35 years at hard labor. 

“The Kidnapping of Schanda Handley” airs Saturday on CBS.

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