Child Escapes House of Horrors; Parents Arrested, Charged

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Starved, imprisoned, forced to live in squalor and mentally and emotionally deprived and are only the beginning of the abuse and torture twelve children faced in Perris, California at the hands of their parents, according to authorities.

Riverside District Attorney Mike Hestrin in a press conference explained some of the shocking and horrifying conditions the victims were forced to endure inside this middle class neighborhood, south of Los Angeles.

"One of the victims is age 12 and is the weight of a 7-year-old while the 29-year-old was 82 pounds. The siblings showered once a year and were chained to their beds for weeks at a time. They were allegedly punished when they washed their hands above their wrists, and beaten regularly. They were allowed one meal a day and one shower a year," Hestrin said.


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David Tarpin, 56 and Louise Tarpin, 49,  inflicted grave mental abuse that included taunting the victims with food, "they would buy pies apple pies, pumpkin pies and leave them on the counter for them to look at but not eat," the persecutor said.

Shocking Depravity

The family lived outside Los Angeles, in Riverside County, in relative obscurity, moving to Perris, California, from Fort Worth, Texas, and lived in multiple cities in both states. It wasn't until one of the 12 victims, a 17 year old girl, had the courage to escape and call 911.

Her bravery led authorties to discover the shocking scene of abuse.

When police arrived they found many of the children still shackled to their beds. The parents had unlocked two of the children who were all chained separately to individuals beds.

Authorities also indicated the evidence in the home suggests the victims were not permitted to even use the restroom.

During the press conference Hestrin said the parent indicated the children were home schooled and cursory evidence revealed simple cognitive thought processes were broken down and words and associations of common expectation for age groups were not recognizable.

The children, according to police, had no idea what medicine was when asked "if there were any medicines or prescription in the home."


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They had no visual or mental reference for police officers, which would have made sense for the parents to keep protective services or those who would provide assistance from the victims.

The parents who refused to allow the victims to play with the toys they purchased and kept in the original wrapping, refused to allow them freedom, on any level, refused them food, refused them love, gave them one outlet: journal writing. The activity they permitted them will be the one that will help the District Attorney prosecute them to the fullest extent the law allows. 

The couples two Maltese Dogs, who appeared healthy and well fed, were seized.

Judge Sets Multi-Million Dollar Bail in Turpin Abuse Case

David Tarpin, 56 and Louise Tarpin, 49, arrested and charged with multiple counts of abuse of a dependent child, child endangerment, child abuse, neglect, torture and 12 counts of false imprisonment. David Turpin has also been charged with a lewd act on a child by force or fear of duress.

The prosecutor said there was no evidence, at this time, to suggest the youngest child, a two year old toddler was subject to any of the long term torture, starvation or conditions the other 12 victims endured over a period of years.

Bail has been set at $12million each.

The parent who showed depraved indifference and reckless endangerment, and have yet to show remorse entered "Not Guilty" pleas through their court appointed public defender for David Turpin.

The power of journals will play heavily in this case as the District attorney explained during a press conference the only outlet the children had over the years appeared to be writing in journals, "Of which we've recovered, "hundreds of them and are now combing through them for evidence."

The parent if convicted could spend the remainder of their lives in prison.

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