A California couple was charged with torture and child endangerment on Tuesday after their 13 children were discovered in an emaciated and filthy state, some shackled to their beds.
57-year-old David Turpin and his 49-year-old wife Louise are being held at the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside. Bail was set at $9 million for each.
One of the children, a 17-year-old girl, managed to escape from her family’s home on Sunday and call the police. Riverside County sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to find her. When they saw her, they were struck by her small size and emaciated appearance. According to the sheriff. she looked like she was only 10 years old.
According to the sheriff's office, deputies found “several children shackled to their beds with chains and padlocks in dark and foul-smelling surroundings.”
The youngest child was 2. At first deputies assumed from their frail and malnourished appearance that all in the group were minors, but they later determined that seven of them were adults ages 18 to 29.
The six children, including the 17-year-old who escaped, are being treated at Riverside University Health System Medical Center in Moreno Valley. The seven adults are being treated at Corona Regional Medical Center in Corona.