Colleen Stan’s case is a highly publicized and well-known story of kidnapping and captivity. On May 19, 1977, at the age of 20, Colleen Stan was hitchhiking from Oregon to California to visit a friend when she accepted a ride from Cameron and Janice Hooker. Little did she know, this would be the beginning of a seven-year-long nightmare.

Colleen stan before her kidnapping

The couple held her captive in a small box for extended periods of time, subjected her to physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, and forced her to comply with their rules. Despite the severity of her situation, Colleen Stan managed to survive and escape in 1984. Her case has become a symbol of the horrors of captivity and the resilience of the human spirit.

Colleen Stan’s harrowing story of captivity, brainwashing, and torture has captured the attention of many since it first came to light in 1984. Stan was kidnapped and forced to live inside a box for seven years, enduring unimaginable abuse and manipulation at the hands of her captors. In this article, we will delve deep into the details of Colleen Stan’s kidnapping, the horrors she endured, and the aftermath of her captivity.

Who is Colleen Stan: Colleen Stan was born on December 31, 1956, in Eugene, Oregon, and was raised in a middle-class family. She was the youngest of five siblings and was described as being shy and introverted as a child. According to her own account, she was a religious person who felt a strong sense of duty to help others.

The Kidnapping and Captivity of Colleen Stan

On May 19, 1977, Colleen Stan, a 20-year-old hitchhiker from Oregon, accepted a ride from Cameron Hooker and his wife, Janice Hooker. Cameron and Janice appeared to be a normal couple with a young child, and Colleen thought nothing of getting in their car. However, little did she know that she had just stepped into a nightmare that would last for seven long years.

representation of the box colleen stan was kept in
representation of the box colleen stan was kept in

Suddenly, Cameron Hooker pulled the car over to the side of the road and pulled out a knife. He held the blade to Colleen’s throat and threatened to kill her if she didn’t cooperate. Fearing for her life, Colleen complied with his demands.

Cameron then took Colleen to their home in Red Bluff, California, the Hookers forced Colleen into a wooden box that was barely larger than a coffin. The box was kept underneath their waterbed and had a small airhole and a speaker for communication with the outside world. For the next seven years, Colleen was kept inside the box for up to 23 hours a day, emerging only to perform household chores or endure sexual and physical abuse at the hands of her captors.

Throughout her captivity, Colleen was subjected to brutal acts of torture, including being whipped, electrocuted, and burned with a cattle prod. The Hookers also forced her to engage in sexual acts with both of them, and Cameron even went so far as to create a “contract” stating that Colleen was his slave and that he owned her for life. He also brainwashed her with a series of “rules” that she was expected to follow, including that she was not allowed to speak without permission, look at anyone in the face, or express her emotions.

The Rescue of Colleen Stan

Despite being regularly beaten and raped during her seven years in captivity from 1977 to 1984, Colleen Stan did not consider these acts of torture to be the worst aspect of her confinement. She was terrified by Cameron’s claim of being a member of a satanic organization called “The Company.” Cameron convinced her that The Company was a powerful organization that watched over her and had her family’s home bugged, further fueling her fear.

Cameron and Janice Hooker - the couple who kidnapped Colleen Stan
Cameron and Janice Hooker

Towards the end of her captivity, Cameron revealed his desire for Stan to become his second wife, which caused tension between him and Janice Hooker. Janice had confessed to being tortured and brainwashed by Cameron since they first started dating, and had developed denial techniques and compartmentalized that aspect of her life.

After this turning point, Janice informed Stan that Cameron was not actually part of The Company and helped her to escape. Initially, Janice asked Stan to keep quiet, believing that Cameron could still be rehabilitated. However, when she realized that he was beyond help, Janice reported him to the police, ultimately leading to his arrest and imprisonment.

The legal proceedings that followed Colleen’s escape were long and complex. Cameron Hooker was eventually charged with multiple counts of rape, kidnapping, and sexual assault, and was sentenced to 104 years in prison. Janice Hooker was granted immunity in exchange for her testimony against her husband. She later divorced him and changed her name.

The long-term effects of Colleen Stan’s captivity were significant. She suffered from PTSD, anxiety, and depression, and had to undergo extensive therapy to recover. She also had to deal with the media attention and public scrutiny that came with her case, which was widely reported in the news. Despite these challenges, Colleen has been a vocal advocate for victims of abuse and has worked to raise awareness about the dangers of hitchhiking and the importance of mental health care for survivors of trauma.

Colleen Stan now

Colleen Stan, who survived seven years of torture and captivity at the hands of her abductors, has since moved on with her life. After her escape on August 10, 1984, Stan and her family celebrated with a party at the beach in 2021. She has written a book about her experiences called The Simple Gifts of Life, which was published in 2009.