Two starving, abused and chained to their beds in the Turpin family’s infamous ‘house of horrors’ have recounted their escape in a poignant new interview.
Jordan Turpin and his sister wrote about the “hell” they endured at their home in Perris, Calif. On ABC News 20/20 Special broadcast on November 19, a year and a half after their parents David and Louise Turpin were sentenced to 25 years in prison for child cruelty, torture and forcible confinement.
In a preview of the episode, Jordan described the night she escaped the house in January 2018 and alerted police to the abuse she and her 12 siblings, aged two to 29, had been having. suffered.
Then 17, Jordan told a 911 dispatcher, âHello, I just ran away from home because I live with a family of 15 and we have abusive parents. “
“My whole body was shaking,” she told Diane Sawyer of ABC News. âI couldn’t really dial 911 becauseâ¦ I think it was just us who were close to death so many times.
“It was now or never. If anything happened to me, at least I would die trying.
The 20/20 Special also features an unreleased video of when police stormed the home and discovered at least two of the children chained to their beds.
Jordan is heard telling a member of Parliament that her parents would “literally kill me” when they find out that she is gone.
âThe only word I know to call her is ‘hell’,â said Jordan’s sister, who was not named in the preview.
The interview marked the first time the Turpin children have spoken to the media about their time in the House of Horrors.
Before Jordan’s escape, the children were kept in dirty and dangerous conditions for years, suffering from malnutrition, sexual abuse and physical abuse.
They were only allowed to shower once a year and were often chained to their beds as punishment for weeks, sometimes months, only occasionally free to use the toilet.
Parents, while starving the children and giving them one meal a day, tempted the children with candy and new toys that they would be punished for touching.
David and Louise Turpin were charged with 12 counts of torture, seven counts of dependent abuse, six6 counts of child abuse, 12 counts of forcible confinement – and one count of obscene act on a child against David.
They initially pleaded not guilty before agreeing to a deal with prosecutors that saw them plead guilty to one count per child.
Louise Turpin apologized to her children during her conviction in April 2019.
âI am sorry for everything I have done to my children. I love my children so much, I am lucky to be the mother of each of them. Their happiness is very important to me, âshe told the court.
âI want them to know that mom and dad are going to be okay. I believe God has a special plan for each of them … I love them more than they could ever imagine.