April 19, 2019
David and Louise Turpin, the couple who kept 13 children in their suburban California home shackled and malnourished, were sentenced to 25 years to life behind bars.
Some of the couple’s children, who were only identified as Jane and Joe Does to protect their identities, gave very emotional statements in court. One of them said that they still had nightmares of the things that David and Louise made them go through, including their siblings “getting chained up or beaten.”
Another child read a statement saying that “life may have been bad, but it made me strong. My parents took my whole life from me, but now I'm taking my whole life back.”
David Turpin in court on January 24, 2018 in Riverside, California | Source: Getty Images
Despite all the things the children went through, some of them pointed out that they still loved their parents. One of David and Louise's children even said that 25 years in prison was “too long” as they believed their parents did “their best” to raise 13 children.
The world first knew about the Turpin couple in January 2018 when one of their daughters, who was 17 years old at the time, escaped from the house and called 911 to alert the authorities.
Louise Turpin in court on January 24, 2018 in Riverside, California | Source: Getty Images
One of the aspects that surprised more people was that the young lady didn’t know what month it was or what “medication” meant. After describing the 911 dispatcher what she and her siblings had been endured, the police went to the house and arrested the couple.
In February, they pleaded guilty to torture and other abuse and neglect counts in Riverside County Superior Court. In a written statement, David admitted to being sorry “if I’ve done anything to cause them harm.”
He added that he felt proud of all his children and hoped that they could stay close to each other since “their mother and father can’t be there for them.” David concluded saying that he would be praying for them.
Louise also read a statement in court, saying that she wanted the best for her children and that was sorry for her actions, too.
Judge Bernard Schwartz labeled as “selfish, cruel, and inhumane” the treatment that the Turpin couple gave to their children. "You have severed the ability to interact and raise your children [that] you have created and brought into this world," the judge told the parents.
"The only reason your punishment is less than the maximum, in my opinion, is because you accepted responsibility at an early stage of the proceedings and spared the children from having to relive the humiliation and harm they endured in that house of horrors," also said Schwartz.
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