The two parents were charged with multiple counts of Child abuse, torture, abuse of dependent adults and false imprisonment and could face close to 100 years to life in prison if convicted.
The two parents were charged with multiple counts of Child abuse, torture, abuse of dependent adults and false imprisonment and could face close to 100 years to life in prison if convicted. EPA - ANDREW GOMBERT

Dogs at ‘horror house’ fed more than kids

TWO healthy dogs have been rescued from the "House of Horrors" where 13 children were allegedly starved and tortured by their own parents.

David Allen Turpin, 57, and Louise Anna Turpin, 49, denied 75 charges of child abuse, torture and false imprisonment when they appeared at court in Riverside, California this week.

Police found the siblings, aged between two and 29, shackled to beds at the filthy home in Perris on Sunday along with two healthy and friendly Maltese-mix puppies.

The Turpin family’s dogs were found in good health, the abusive couple apparently looking after the pets while abusing their children. Picture: City of Perris
The Turpin family’s dogs were found in good health, the abusive couple apparently looking after the pets while abusing their children. Picture: City of Perris

Senior animal control officer, Christina Avila, said the one-year-old females - one white and one black - appear to be leash-trained.

They are now up for adoption and the City of Perris will hold a raffle to rehome them together.

The Maltese-mixes are now up for adoption and the City of Perris will hold a raffle to rehome them together. Picture: City of Perris
The Maltese-mixes are now up for adoption and the City of Perris will hold a raffle to rehome them together. Picture: City of Perris

The health of the pets is a stark contrast to that of the Turpin children, who police said were so malnourished that their growth had been stunted, leading to muscle wasting and cognitive impairment.

Dressed all in black with their hands and legs shackled, the pair appeared calm as they submitted not-guilty pleas to 12 counts of torture, 12 of false imprisonment, six of child abuse and six of abuse of a dependent adult, before a packed courtroom.

Dog bowls seen in exterior photographs taken of the Turpin family home in Perris, California. Picture: Stewart Cook/The Sun
Dog bowls seen in exterior photographs taken of the Turpin family home in Perris, California. Picture: Stewart Cook/The Sun

David Turpin was also charged with performing a lewd act on a child under age 14.

Each faces 94 years to life in prison if convicted on the more than two dozen charges that include torture, child abuse, dependent adult abuse and false imprisonment.

It comes amid revelations about Louise Turpin's own troubled childhood, revealed by her sister Elizabeth Flores in a series of Christian self-help books.

In one she talks about being "filled with fear" during a very traumatic childhood in which she watched her mother getting "beaten and raped".

"My life was filled with fear starting at a young age," she writes in Stepping Into Courage.

"Fear of death, fear of being along and fear of people are just a few things that have caused deep suffering.

"Many things I have gone though as a child have caused deep suffering … Being molested, watching my mom being beaten and raped and being abused myself as a child combined to cause the fear of people, especially men."

In another book Elizabeth goes into further detail about how she was sexually abused from the age of nine by a trusted family member.

"When I was a little girl and growing up I was molested," she writes in the book Resilience In The Storm.

Elizabeth Jane Flores, the sister of Louise Turpin, has opened up about her abusive childhood, saying she was sexually abused and saw her mother beaten and raped.
Elizabeth Jane Flores, the sister of Louise Turpin, has opened up about her abusive childhood, saying she was sexually abused and saw her mother beaten and raped.

"I think I was around nine-years-old when a family member that I loved so much and I was supposed to be able to trust molested me.

"It continued all though my childhood and teen years."

It is not known whether her sister Louise experienced the same traumatic childhood.

Elizabeth also explained that in later life she had her own children taken off her after her husband left her for another woman and she ended up "turning away from God".

"The hurt was so deep that I began to try and get his attention by turning away from God," she writes in "Resilience In The Storm".

"I lost my kids for a little while because of this.

"I felt like I had nothing to live for and I became suicidal."

She doesn't explain exactly why she lost her kids but adds: "Even despite losing my husband and children, I was able to worship and have peace and joy that only God can give."

Elizabeth goes on to claim that she prayed to God that her husband "couldn't sleep, eat, or do anything without thinking about me" and he later returned home with the kids and they patched up their marriage.

In the books, which advise people on how to cope with adversity by turning to God, Elizabeth also goes on to reveal how her parents died within three months of each other, how she battled cancer and how she suffered a miscarriage in her sixth pregnancy.

Earlier this week, Elizabeth revealed how she had no idea her nieces and nephews were being abused because the Turpins cut themselves off from the rest of her family and did not allow them to contact the kids.

She also revealed how her creepy brother-in-law David would watch her in the shower when she lived with the family for a short time as a college student.

The Turpins are currently being held on $9 million bail in Riverside, California. Today they plead not guilty to a raft of abuse and torture charges.

This article originally appeared on The Sun and has been republished here with permission.


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