The CS Press

Parents Plead Not Guilty

Grace Carey, staff writer

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On January 14, California police got an alarming call from a 17 year old girl, claiming that she and her 12 other siblings were being imprisoned by their parents.  

The parents, Louise and David Turpin have plead not guilty to all charges and will appear in court again on February 23.  They will face up to 40 charges, some being 12 counts of torture and 12 counts of false imprisonment.  If convicted of all charges, both parents could face anywhere from 94 years to life in prison.

All but one of the children belonging to Louis and David Turpin were malnourished.  Ranging from 2-29, the only child given food on a regular basis was two.

The parents not only starved their children. but taunted them with it.  Placing pumpkin pies on the table and chaining the kids to furniture so they couldn’t get it.  All kids (apart from the two year old) begged for food, but were denied time and time again.

When the children misbehaved they would be punished.  Punishments ranged anywhere from days to months.  They were tied with rope first, and over time it escalated to chains and padlocks.  When facing a punishment they were not allowed to use the bathroom, among other “luxuries.”

Neighbors of the family claim that in the few encounters that they had with the kids they never spoke, but simply smiled and nodded.  One of the neighbors, Mike Clifford, said that he did not worry too much when he saw the kids walking around in circles in the yard late at night, and that maybe the children had special needs.

On many reports, neighbors recall thinking the Turpin children were a lot younger than they actually were.  Salynn Simon told the Times that she was more surprised than disturbed when she learned that a boy in his mid-20s looked that of a 15 year old adolescent boy.

District Attorney Mike Hestrin stated that the kids lacked “basic knowledge of life.” The oldest child, 29, attended a community college and was escorted from class to class by his mother.

Louise and David Turpin were arrested on January 14. The bail was originally set at $9mil but has been raised to $12mil, with an end goal of $13mil.

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Parents Plead Not Guilty