Two parents are being held on $9 million bonds each after it was discovered that they were holding 12 victims captive in Perris, California.
The discovery was made after a 17-year-old escaped from captivity and called 911 on Sunday, KTLA-TV reported. During the call, the girl said her siblings were in padlocks and chains.
Investigators discovered “several children shackled to their beds with chains and padlocks in dark and foul-smelling surroundings,” the release said. The parents could not provide a “logical” explanation for why the kids were restrained, investigators said.
Authorities located what they thought were 12 children, but were “shocked” to find out that seven of them were adults. In all, the victims are between the ages of 2 and 29, the release stated.
They looked to be malnourished and filthy, authorities said. The department did not say how long the children had been held under such conditions.
According to the Press Enterprise, the area they children were held captive in was “dark and foul smelling.”
“The parents were unable to immediately provide a logical reason why their children were restrained in that manner,” the release said. “Deputies located what they believed to be 12 children inside the house, but were shocked to discover that seven of them were actually adults, ranging in age from 18 to 29. The victims appeared to be malnourished and very dirty.”
It was also discovered that the parents were operating Sandcastle Day School, with students enrolled in fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth, 10th and 12th grades. The father was registered with the Department of Education as the principal of the school.
The parents, 56-year-old David Allen Turpin and 49-year-old Louise Anna Turpin, are being held on nine felony counts each of torture and 10 felony counts each of child endangerment.
The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department released the following statement:
— KTLA (@KTLA) January 15, 2018
@RSO says a 17-year-old girl escaped her home in #Perris & alerted deputies of her 12 siblings being held against their will by their parents, some chained to their beds. Deputies recall the malnourished teen appeared to only be 10 years old and slightly emaciated. @KABCRadio
— James Rojas (@JamesRojasWBZ) January 16, 2018
Sad that the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department thought she was only 10 years old because of how malnourished she is.
Is there some way to help these poor kids? This is terrible. God bless that girl for finding the strength to escape. ?
— Polly Fleming ? (@PollyFleming24) January 15, 2018
Buy them food and water and make sure these monsters never get their hands on them again.
I can't fathom the horrid conditions that these kids had to endure all these years. These so called "parents" need to never see the free side of bars ever!
— Doan Piet (@HonestHooligan) January 16, 2018
They shouldn’t have procreated either.
Of course, people had ideas on how to punish the couple:
— Nucky ? (@Enochstone1) January 15, 2018
That’d be too easy.
Set them on fire.
— Jen (@JenzoBeans) January 15, 2018
That’d be smelly.
Disgusting. Lock them n a cell without food and water forever. Poor kids smh ??♀️
— Kai (@kaislife2020) January 15, 2018
Then they’d know what it’s like to be starved.
— KTLA (@KTLA) January 15, 2018
If this doesn’t give you chills, nothing will.
Sickened ? pic.twitter.com/w4cApSwr6C
— elizabeth (@ecjcj) January 16, 2018
Disgusting, isn’t it?
She’s really smiling in her picture. Wow.
— Mondoburger (@migueroa03) January 15, 2018
She has no mercy for what she’s done.
13 Children, ages 2-29, were found shackled to beds in their Perris home after one daughter escaped and informed police her parents were holding them captive https://t.co/evSP1OCyMJ pic.twitter.com/k8pu1Rxrpv
— CBS Los Angeles (@CBSLA) January 15, 2018
How could the neighbors and teachers not be suspicious? Did they go to school? Doctor? Religious place of worship? Did anyone work?
— Ms. Lonnie ?? (@Lon_S_J) January 16, 2018
Sadly, not everyone that sees something says something.
— FOX 11 Los Angeles (@FOXLA) January 15, 2018
Please judicial system do the same to them. Chain them up and don’t feed them
— Suzanna Banana (@rtwosweetooth) January 15, 2018
They’d probably sue…and win.
It’s a nice house. Who would have thought this would take place in their neighborhood?
It truly scares and saddens me how demented, disgusting, and inhumane some people can be. It’s just absolutely mind boggling to me. #perris
— Jasmine Williams (@thisisjazzi) January 16, 2018
Welcome to 2018. This is becoming the norm.
There are a lot of people who would get behind you on that one.