I know it is wrong to judge by appearance, but these people look a little off...
THE BASICS :
A California couple has pleaded not guilty to allegations they tortured a dozen of their children, kept them chained to beds for months and starved them so much that their growth was stunted and their muscles atrophied.
It plays out like a bad #LIFETIME movie...
David and Louise Turpin were both born in West Virginia. They were married in 1985 in Pearisburg, Virginia, when she was 16 years old and he was 23. They lived in Fort Worth and Rio Vista, Texas, and moved to Murrieta, California in 2010. They moved into their current home in Perris, about 70 miles from Los Angeles, in 2014.
They renewed their vows 3 times in 5 years and all presided over by an Elvis impersonator.
The Turpins have 13 children between two and 29 years old. Seven of them are adults. Investigators said the siblings had been so malnourished that the older ones still looked like children. The oldest, a 29-year-old woman, weighed just 82 pounds, prosecutors said. A 12-year-old appeared to be the size of an average seven-year-old.
Their 17-year-old daughter had been planning an escape with several other siblings for two years, On Sunday, the girl jumped out of a window and escaped with another sibling, who got scared and eventually went back home. But the 17-year-old used a deactivated cellphone to call 911. Thankfully there was a signal.
The children were chained inside the house.
This has been going on for awhile and has intensified over time....
Years ago, they would tie up their children with ropes and at least one of the children had been hogtied but after that child escaped from the ropes, they started to use chains and padlocks, Hestrin said.
Some of the children would be chained for weeks or months at a time and wouldn't be freed to use the bathroom, he said. Their punishments included frequent beatings and strangulation, the district attorney said.
The children were only allowed to shower once a year, Hestrin said. When washing their hands, if they washed above their wrists, they would be accused of playing in the water and would be chained up, he said.
It looked like a normal suburban home.
Prosecutors said David and Louise Turpin would buy food for themselves but did not allow their children to eat it. They placed apple and pumpkin pies on the table, let their children look at the food but would not let them eat any of it!!
The family would be up all night and go to bed around 4am. The children were allowed to write in journals and investigators are reviewing hundreds of journals they seized from the home.
Their neighbors had no idea any of this was going on and the parents are denying all of this.