13 Children Rescued From Home After Being Held Captive and Abused by Their Parents
This is an absolutely appalling situation. A young girl escaped her home in Perris and called authorities on a cell phone she took from the house. She described a disturbing scenario: 12 other children were being held captive in the home they shared with their parents, David Turpin and Louise Turpin. Some of the children, said the girl, were chained to their beds. The girl, who is 17, looked no older than 10, according to authorities. She was very small and appeared emaciated.
When authorities arrived at the house on Muir Woods Road, they discovered a scene straight out of a nightmare.
They found several children in the home. Many were chained and padlocked to beds, in conditions described as “dark and foul-smelling”. In all, 13 children lived in the home, ranging in ages from 2 – 29. Authorities said they initially believed the children to be minors, based on their appearances. They were shocked to discover that 7 of them were adults, ages 18 – 29.
The parents, Louise and David Turpin, could not provide a logical reason as to why the children and adults were chained to their beds. They were arrested on suspicion of torture and child endangerment. Both are being held in lieu of $9 million bail.
The rescued children and adults were given food and water, and transported to area hospitals for treatment. Now, authorities are trying to untangle this horror story, and find answers. The Turpins had lived in the home for several years; David, at one point, worked as an engineer at Northrop Grumman, according to bankruptcy documents filed by the couple. Louise’s occupation was listed as homemaker. The home was registered with the state of California as a private school, called Sandcastle Day School. David Turpin was named as principal, and records show 6 children were enrolled. The couple is described as “deeply religious”, and believed God called on them to have so many kids.
But how did family and neighbors not know what was going on? Several neighbors have said that although they knew of the family, they had no idea how many kids lived there. David’s parents claim they had no idea what was going on, saying they hadn’t seen the couple in 4 or 5 years.
However, either David or Louise kept a Facebook profile, and regularly added photos of the family and kids. In July 2016, several photographs were posted, appearing to show David and Louise renewing their wedding vows in Las Vegas. All of the children were in attendance. None of them look older than 10 or 11.
David Turpin and Louise Turpin have each been charged with 9 counts of torture and 10 counts of child endangerment. They are due back in court this week. All of the children remain hospitalized. Children’s services will appear before a judge to take guardianship of all 13 kids, including the adults.
(Image: Riverside County Sheriffs Department)