If you watched the news or read any kind of news-related media on the web, you’ve likely heard of the Turpin family. This time last year, news broke that authorities had uncovered one of the most tragic and shocking child abuse cases they’d yet to see in California history.
The family was a rather large one with thirteen children in total. What seemed to be an ordinary family from the outside was something much different and darker behind closed doors.
A documentary called Tortured by Mum and Dad?: The Turpin 13 has since been made about the family, detailing all the horrific tragedies the children had to endure. Here’s a brief rundown:
“This documentary investigates the shocking story of David and Louise Turpin, who kept their 13 children imprisoned in their own home until they were found in January 2018 when one of the siblings escaped and called the police. This programme shines a light on the mystery of how an unassuming suburban family in California managed to hide their dark and sinister secret for so long.”
The news hit the fan when one of the eldest Turpin children, who was 17 at the time, escaped out of a bedroom window. She immediately called 911 through a deactivated cell phone. Once the police arrived on the scene, there was no turning back.
“The police arrived at the home and were shocked by the severe malnourishment of the children, some of whom appeared much younger than their actual age. Whilst rescuing the Turpin children from captivity, police said that the parents ‘were unable to immediately provide a logical reason why their children were restrained in that manner.’”
Now, one year after their rescue, the Turpin children are finding their voice. Their lawyer, Jack Osborn elaborated on their current state. He told that the seven oldest children are slowly but happily adapting to their new lives. Much to his and many others’ surprise, they have left many of their bitter feelings and hatred for their upbringing behind.
“They’re not bitter. They really take every day as it is - a gift. They want to be known as survivors, not victims,” Osborn told. He continued, “They came from a situation that seemed normal to them. And now they’re in a new normal. I think they may spend a long time processing the two.”
And that’s certainly understandable, to say the least. We do hope and pray that in the months and years to come, all of the children will continue to grow through the pain they endured and blossom into bright adults with an exciting future before them.