Allen Turpin and Louise Ann Turpin
On Sunday, Perris, California police responded to the 911 call of a 17 year-old girl who said she had just escaped confinement from her torturous parents. She had 12 siblings back home.
“Further investigation [of the Turpin family home] revealed several children shackled to their beds with chains and padlocks in dark and foul-smelling surroundings, but the parents were unable to immediately provide a logical reason why their children were restrained in that manner,” the official police statement read.
After freeing the total of 13 siblings, deputies discovered that seven of what they thought were severely emaciated kids were actually adults “ranging in age from 18 to 29.” The children have been admitted to nearby hospitals for treatment. Corona Regional Medical Center CEO Mark Uffer said, “It's hard to think of them as adults because they're very small."
Daniel Hoffman, a professor of nutritional sciences at Rutgers University, told CNN that growth is essentially halted at the age at which undernutrition begins.
CNN also referred to the family's social media pics as projecting a contrasted "picture-perfect" image of the group, but any realist would look at these freaky portraits and agree they scream weird cult shit. Always dressed in matching uniforms, the children circled around their bowl-cut-donning dad and Morticia-looking, sunken-eyed mom in every picture.
The Turpins believed “God called on them” to give birth so many times
The details of the Turpin family are vague and shrouded in myth. One neighbor said the children appeared "very pale-skinned, almost like they'd never seen the sun." Other neighbors say attempts to speak to them in passing were met with total silence and/or shock.
Other bits of information have trickled into the news cycle, including that the family had their home registered as a private school for only their children (where they were forced to memorize Bible passages), the family was in up to $500,000 of debt, and the couple had renewed their wedding vows three times at the exact same Elvis Chapel in Las Vegas.
What the fuck?
The boys (or men, I can't keep up) of the family were all assigned their father's signature hairstyle (somewhere between Anton Chigurh from No Country for Old Men and Lloyd Christmas from Dumb and Dumber), to complete the family cult image.
And while I'm sure more--and potentially darker--details will continue to surface, one attempts, for the time being, to not let the mind wander into what other sorts of other fucked-up shit went on inside that house.
For now, the couple are charged with torture and child endangerment, and scheduled for a court hearing Thursday. Bail was set at $9 million each.