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Listening to the 911 call made by the 17-year-old Turpin girl. She sounds somewhere b/n 10-11. She misspelled her last name, she doesn’t know her address offhand. Then she lists a bunch of numbers without the street name.
She tells the 911 operator that she’s never been out after the operator asks if she’s near home. For the address she gives the zip code.
She tells operator she left b/c her parents are abusive, says two sisters are chained up (at the time of call). She says one brother tied up, specifically says they are chained to their beds.
She doesn’t know her mom’s age. Asked about the older siblings the girl says none of the kids are allowed to move out. She says she doesn’t know what medicine is.
She says Louise tells people they go to private school, but they don’t go to any school. She says she hasn’t finished first grade (again she’s 17).
She tells the 911 operator that the family is about to move to Oklahoma. She tells the operator that her dad works “for the government, he works on planes.”
She then tells the operator about how the kids were left at a house in Texas for four years. She says she doesn’t know much about her mother, says her mother doesn’t like them (the kids)
The girl says of the 2-year-old “mother takes care of her right.”
Girl says the kids are chained up when they do something wrong. Says her sisters were crying through the night asking her to call someone for help, which is why she ran away.
Girl says they live in filth, and sometimes she wakes up and can’t breath. Says they never take baths, tells operator her last bath was almost a year ago.
Girl says mom and dad and (I think Uncle Randy) are the only people who come to the house. She says her extended family doesn’t know them. Says her Aunt Elizabeth asked to see the kids but Louise wouldn’t let them. She says the family has been moving around California.
The girl wasn’t sure where else she lived...eventually came up with Murrietta. The call was about 20 minutes long.
The RCSD deputy who picked up the girl says her hair appeared unwashed, she had dirt caked on her skin, she had an odor of one who doesn’t bathe regularly. Girl showed him a scar, but he had trouble seeing it because of dirt on her foot.
Deputy says her speech appeared to be the speech of a child, she had trouble pronouncing words. She only referred to parents as “mother” and “father” says she was taught to address them that way because it was more like the Bible days.
Girl told deputy leaving the house was one of the scariest things she had ever done. She left the house through bedroom window. She said she was rarely allowed outside.
Girl told detective she could barely dial 911 because she was so scared she was shaking. She said she couldn’t stand to watch her sisters chained up anymore. She said everyone was crying and mother was yelling at everyone. Said mother called one of the sisters the devil.
The girl couldn’t tell the deputy the date. She knew the year and the first month of the year, but she didn’t know the name of the month. She said she was planning the escape for two years. She had been trying to get ahold of a cell phone.
Her brother got a new phone and she was able to get his old cell phone....which didn’t have service. There was a wifi connection in the house. Unclear how they could use it.
She tells the deputy about how her sisters were able to slip out of chains once and then mother put the chains on even tighter. She says they spend about 20 hours a day in her room with her sisters. She was only allowed to leave to eat, use the restroom and to brush her teeth.
The girls where chained up for taking candy from the kitchen. (Also first real sign of emotion from Louise as she wipes tears from her eyes)
Girl says last time at doctor was 2014, before that was when she was a baby. She said she had never been to the dentist. She said she didn’t have any friends.
They are showing a photo of the room. Two sets of bunk beds with a mattress on the floor. There are two padlocks on one of the beds. The deputy says the girl told him she sleeps 15 or more hours. Says she would wake up at 11p and wake up at 3a.
The kids weren’t allowed to exercise, so the girl tells the deputy she walked back and forth in her room for exercise.
The girl says her 18-year-old sister had been sleeping in the hallway for more than a year. Says the only time they got out of rooms to hang out together was when mother and father were out of the house. The girl says they never eat breakfast, but lunch and dinner everyday.
The girl tells the deputy that the lunch and dinner were merged because they weren’t awake long enough for two separate meals. The meals would be a peanut butter or baloney sandwich, frozen burrito and chips. She says she can’t eat peanut butter anymore...it makes her gag.
Girl tells deputy they only go out on halloween, says she had been to Vegas and Disneyland. She says she would stick her head out of the window to breath because her room smelled so bad, something she wasn’t allowed to do.
She says the older kids (20 and above) were allowed to leave their rooms, but they were not allowed to leave the house.
Discipline included knocks on head, hits and smacks of the face, one incident of being choked. Says her mother would pull her head and “pitch” her around the room while pulling hair.
Girl told deputy that the mother threw one of the sisters down the stairs at their home in Texas.
The girl tells the deputy that the only time they were treated well was around Christmas time. The “good treatment” would last two days to two weeks...and then everyone would go back to rooms and chains.
Girl says she was choked because she watched a Justin Bieber video on a cell phone borrowed from her sister. Her brother told her parents about the video.
The girl says her mother told her “you want to die and go to hell” while choking her. The girl said she thought she was going to die, said her neck was sore for the next two days.
The girl told the deputy she had access to social media with the help of an older sister, said almost everything she knows is b/c of that sister. Says she feels like she has nothing in her brain. Says she tried to reach out to someone on Twitter in India.
The girl said her father sexually abused her. She says she was 12. She says her father called her into TV room and pulled her pants down and sat her on his lap. She told him “I don’t like that stuff”, he kept trying, she says she was able to push away as mother walked upstairs.
Girl said her father told her he better not tell anyone. She told the deputy her father would try to force kisses on her mouth. Girl said it happened at least four, possibly as many as ten times. She says the last time that happened was when she was 14-15.
Defense is objecting to testimony about what happened when the family lived in Texas. Saying that conduct happened many years ago and the child could not put precise time on it, further acts are beyond statute of limitations. And it’s conduct beyond jurisdiction. Judge disagrees.
Defense is asking for a mis-preliminary hearing if evidence from Texas is included. Says it’s the first time in 30 years he’s asked for such a thing (if such a thing exists). Judge again disagrees, but says the PD can make a motion to strike Texas evidence after it’s presented.
The girl told the deputy that no parents lived in the house in Texas when she was between 6 and 9-years-old. Says older brother took care of her, says she didn’t see her mother during those years.
Defense on cross, focuses on the scar that the deputy had trouble seeing under dirt. PD attempts to make clear the scar was NOT the result of abuse. Clarified that the girl had social media accounts and had uploaded videos of her singing.
The PD clarifies also that the girl had at least one friend on social media. Deputy testifies that the girl was planning on calling CPS and knew what CPS did. PD seems to be laying the groundwork for the kids being less naive than prosecutors have painted so far.
PD also zeroing in on meals, saying when lunch and dinner were combined into one meal the kids were offered the same amount of food as the two separate meals. Also PD’s line of questioning clarifies that only mother was physically abusing, according to what the girl saw.
PD moves on to the accusation of sexual abuse. Deputy says the father was clothed and there was no other touching, after very directed questioning.
PD representing Louise focuses on the choking incident, deputy testifies the girl couldn’t remember if her mother had choked her with one or two hands, the girl said it hadn’t left visible marks on her neck and wasn’t able to estimate the length of time the choking occurred.
Prosecutors bring the Riverside County Detective Tom Salisbury back to the stand, he only briefly testified in advance of the 911 tape this morning. Says he talked with another of the girls and interviewed the parents on 1/14.
The girl told the detective that she was being homeschooled before moving to Murrietta, they had worked up to the letter I in the alphabet, but only some additional home-schooling at Perris house, worked up to letter J.
Girl says if they didn’t draw a in straight lines or stay within lines then mother would pull hair and toss around room. She says any words she learned were self-taught or taught by older siblings. She said she even had a problem with the word “said”.
Detective says the 12-year-old didn’t understand the difference between a state and a country. She thought Texas was a country. (Then again so do all Texans)
The 12-year-old says the older girls acted as hall monitors in the home. She told the detective that it was to stop the kids from getting candy, things and belongings from mothers room and from getting food from the kitchen...which she described as stealing.
The girl told the detective she lived in a trailer with her siblings while in Texas when she was under five. She called the trailer filthy, dirty and smelly.
At Riverside County homes the meals were prepared by older sister. The kids would come out one at a time, stand at the counter eat and return to their bedrooms. The sister would call kids out one by one.
The girl told the detective that the last time she had taken a bath was in May of 2017. (This interview happened in mid-Jan).
The girl told detectives that she had taken some stuff out of her mother’s room and was caught while putting it back. The mother grabbed her by her neck and hair and forced her to the ground and pushed her under the bed until she found something she dropped under bed.
Girl says she was bitten by spiders while under the bed.
The girl told the detective that the mother would knock the kids on their heads with her knuckles. She says sometimes the knocks were so fast that her mind went blank. Girl said she saw one of her sisters being choked, and that she herself had been choked.
She said she was picked up by her mother off the ground by her neck after saying she had to go to the bathroom.
The 22-year-old son told the detective that he and two of his sisters had been chained up because they were “suspects” which was a term mother used. He said they were suspects of stealing stuff and being disrespectful.
The 22-year-old had been chained and tied up for about 6.5 years. He said it started with ropes and then chains. He said he used his teeth to escape the ropes, so the parents switched to small chains, he got out of those so they switched to heavier chains.
The 22-year-old told the detective said the chains made it hard for him to sleep and move and roll over and pinch the lice on his head or scratch his back. (Btw that 6.5 years was off and on)
The son told the detective he worked up to and completed the third grade level and he didn’t expect any more education. He told the detective there were only ten grade levels.
PD taking over cross, points out the detective told the 12-year-old was quite articulate, he says he tried to encourage the kids where he could. PD questions whether detective could ascertain level of anxiety from the girl.
Some focus on scars that the 22-year-old had on his head, detective says they were accidentally, but they happened during the time when the #Turpin kids were living on their own in Texas. Prosecutors hammering at the point that no mom or dad was there to take him to ER.
(FWIW, they are using the #Turpin kids names...I haven’t been using them for a few reasons: 1. ID’ing kids is a thorny issue. 2. Keeping these names and spellings straight in real time is just a bit difficult.)
And we’re back in session for the afternoon.
Detective who intervened 14-year-old now taking the stand. Says the girl told him she was thrown by the stairs by her mother when she was nine. Says she was caught in her mothers room, she was thrown around bedroom before being pushed down the stairs.
The girl told the detective she was chained up, for taking stuff. Said there were dark places on her arms. Detective says he saw dirt caked on both of her arms.
A picture of her arm is shown in court....the clean spots on her arm mark where the chains were. (It looks like when you wears flip flops in a dusty place and then take them off and see the outline of the flip-flops is marked by a lack of dust.)
The girl said she had been locked up since October of 2017. She told the detective about two other siblings who were chained (corroborating what we’ve heard so far).
The girl said since the family moved to Perris there had been no schooling. She said mother stopped and gave up on teaching them.
The girl said someone would be in the hallway at all hours to make sure the kids didn’t steal food. She said she was terrified of her mother. She said her mother knocks her on the head, throws her around the room and pulls her hair (again fitting a broader pattern).
On the day cops showed up the girl said her mother ran into the room, took off the chains and threw them into the closet.
Prosecutors now showing photos of clothing worn by kids. The first is of one of the boys, they were heavy and soiled and smelled putrid. The next is of one of the girls, same as above but the underwear is covered in what appears to be old blood.
And yet another sister’s clothing shows exactly the shame thing.
Detective says he put a 5150 hold on any of kids who were over the age of 18. Says they were all greatly disabled adults (that was struck btw). Says based on diminished mental capacity, none of them could answer what they would do if they went home without parents.
PD on the cross. Detective says girl was crying b/c she was scared for her parents. Again PD for David pursuing a narrative that has him always away at work and not physically harming the kids. PD highlighting pizza ordered for the kids, detective says very infrequently.
Detective says older kids were allowed to watch TV if they helped with mother. And oldest kids were able to sometimes leave home as long as with mother.
Now a deputy is testifying about his interview with one of the girls. The girl told him she was always hungry, said meal was jalapeño and baloney sandwiches, peanut butter sandwiches and what she called “freezer food.” Says sometimes they got just plain bread.
The girl told the deputy that the parents would eat Jersey Mike’s, pizza and fries...but none for the kids. Said she was too afraid to ask for some of that food for fear of being yelled at.
Girl said one of her favorite things to drink was apple juice, mother would buy apple juice and leave it in the fridge but the kids couldn’t drink. Also says mother would buy pies and let them go moldy w/out letting kids eat them.
Girl says she wasn’t allowed to look outside the window. Girl said she was allowed to take a bath on Mother’s Day 2017, that was the last bath and last change of clothes. Her bedding hadn’t been changed since Christmas of 2016.
The girl told the deputy that she and several siblings lost Christmas for stealing food because they were so hungry. They couldn’t celebrate with the rest of the family, but were instead made to watch.
The girl told the deputy that her mother would punch with a closed fist and lift her up by her hair. Said it hurt so bad she wanted to cry, but she was afraid to cry for fear of more punishment.
The girl said she started getting chained up around the age of 11. Her mattress was on the ground and she would have the chains wrapped around both wrists and then around a bedpost. When her mother found out she could stand up she threatened to shorten it.
The girl said older sister ran into room and unchained her when police showed up, and threw them into closet. (In an earlier tweet I wrote mother, that was a mistake).
The girl said she had also been slapped across face, she called them spankings on the face. Prosecutors press for deputy to recount whether the father was present when that happened. Girl said she was equally terrified of mother and father #Turpin
The girl said it was father’s idea to chain the kids up. The girl said when she heard knocking on the door she knew her sister made it to police and she would be saved. “She would finally become free.” #Turpin
PD for David #Turpin again pushing for distance between him and Louise in cross examination. Specifically calling into question whether the girl heard first-hand from David that the chaining up of the kids was his idea.
Riverside County DA investigator taking the stand. Talking about conversations with Riverside University Health Service doctors who examined the minor kids.
One girl had muscle wasting & the body weight percentile of .01. Her mid upper arm was the equivalent of a 4.5 month old and she was 11-years-old. Her height was stunted due to malnutrition. She weighed 46 lbs, should have been at least 62 lbs for her height (which was stunted)
She was also deficient in electrolytes affecting her heart performance and a pale appearance caused by anemia. The doctor said her liver enzymes were spilling out into blood, typical of malnutrition cases. Indication of liver damage.
Said she had psychosocial dwarfism, stunted growth and development due to living in neglectful environment. The doctor said one of her brothers suffered from the same condition.
That boy was in the bottom one percent for his height and weight, he had difficult walking due to muscle waste. Also had a hyperthyroid condition and a vitamin D deficiency. The boy also had visible scoliosis.
Doctor said the boy also mentioned he wanted to kill animals and that his dreams could predict the future. The boy was 15-years-old when the doctor saw him.
Another sister also displayed minor scoliosis. The doctor referred her to speech therapy because she was hard to understand.
The doctor says the kids showed significant catch-up weight once they were admitted, which further indicates malnutrition.
In one case one of the girls gained a year’s worth of weight in one week after being admitted to hospital.
Another Riverside County DA investigator has taken the stand. Prosecutors taking a fine look at the documents filed with the state department of education about the home school...this hits the core of the perjury charges against David.
The document is an affidavit declaring the Turpin homeschool a: Private full time school focused on subjects taught in public schools and they are keeping attendance records.
David Turpin is listed as principal.
Prosecution just spent the last several minutes going over each of the affidavits laying out two pathways to perjury. 1. Lying about the curriculum. 2. Falsely checking “no” on a form question asking if the applicant had filled out form for previous school. (He had).
Investigator says 17-year-old told him she equated her education to that of a first-grader. Said none of them went to school except for the oldest son. The girl said she would go years without any education, even home schooling. During that time she described it as doing nothing.
She said her mother would instruct the kids to sit in a hallway during the day to not be seen by the neighbors because they were supposed to be in school and they were not.
On the sexual abuse, the investigator clarifies that the girl was placed on her father’s thigh after he took her pants down. The girl described it as one of the worst days of her life, she said she planned to commit suicide. She said she filled the sink w/ water to drown herself.
The investigator says one of the girls said she had a high school diploma, but she said it was ordered online, said mother told her “that was for homeschoolers” the girl said she didn’t earn it. This girl actually went to public school up to third grade.
Investigator, with emphasis, testifies that the 29-year-old girl said it was her fathers idea to chain kids up, he said, “Things were going to continue missing in the house if they don’t chain all of them” And the mother actually argued against chaining everyone.
On interviewing the 20-year-old: he could barely speak, he was so nervous. Investigator says the boy made a point of explaining that being pushed wasn’t as simplistic as it sounded...it threw him to the ground or across the room. That was layer one of punishment.
The next level of punishment was the belt, both leather and buckle end. He said the buckle end would break the skin. And then they would move on to using a paddle. After that they would use an oar with the pants down, described as “worst of the worst.”
The last punishment was a switch, but it was actually a fiberglass tent pole. He said it broke the skin, and the punishment was administered by both parents. This progression of punishment happened in Texas.
The parents would also use cages, the investigator says they were about 7’ wide and 5’ tall with wooden sides and just enough space for food to be slid underneath. Two kids would be put in each of the cages.
Once the kids figured out how to escape, the parents moved onto a common large dog kennel. About three feet by three feet. The 20-year-old told the investigator says the caging started when he was b/n 15 and 16. It started b/c he was caught watching Star Wars.
The cages were in a double-wide trailer adjacent to their home in Texas. The 20-year-old said the house was uninhabitable. The parents eventually moved out of the trailer to an apartment about 50 miles away. (fwiw, the defense has objected to most of the question about Texas)
The parents were gone for 3-4 years. The oldest boy and girl were in charge. The two youngest kids at the time went with the parents, everyone else was in the trailer. Punishments were still implemented, by phone.
The oldest said he put his siblings in the cages b/c if he didn’t then he himself would be put in a cage. He said he was terrified of his parents and he did things the “correct way” to keep his siblings alive.
The investigator is now talking about the state of the adult children when they were admitted to the hospital after rescue. The oldest daughter weighed 83 lbs, her ideal weight was 115. She was suffering from neuropathy, malnutrition, severe vitamin B-12 deficiency.
Doctor described many of the adult Turpin children as having almost no muscles development at all. Doctor said the oldest daughters would probably not be able to bear children.
Investigator says oldest boy was 115 lbs, should have been 154 lbs. The oldest kids were also diagnosed w/ cachexia, a chronic wasting caused by malnutrition. Another son 47 lbs under weight. Another daughter 30 lbs under weight. Average underweight of 6 adult children was 32 lbs
Investigator says 18-year-old got in trouble for playing with a Barbie. She was put in the corner of a bathroom for a couple hours, in that time she became lightheaded and dizzy. She tried telling her mother, the girl passed out and chipped her teeth and bleeding.
Parents waited an hour to take her to the hospital. Parents gave a directive on what to say, to tell the doctor that she slipped on water while walking into the bathroom. The girl had a hairline fracture to her jaw. There was a recommendation to follow up w/ surgeon.(She did not)
Photos being shown again of the bedrooms. One of them shows chains dangling from the bedrail of one of the boys’ beds. Then a picture taken by the 17-year-old of one of her sisters in chains.
She’s incredibly pale and thin, with the chains wrapped around her wrists. Another picture shows a different sister chained on her bed. The pictures show indentations and bruising (the kids described that as “places”)
These pictures brought the most audible gasps of the day, as you might imagine.
This is going to be carried over to tomorrow at 10am.
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