Margaret Carrero

Perris Couple Accused of Allegedly Abusing 12 of their Children Plead Not Guilty

August 31, 2018 - 12:00 pm

(KNX 1070) -- The Perris couple accused of torturing and abusing 12 of their 13 children once again pleads not guilty to all charges Friday.

The couple are Louise and David Turpin. The judge denied a motion by Mr. Turpin to have his perjury charges tried separately.

They’re tied to papers he signed with the State Education Department,  claiming the siblings were being homeschooled.

Prosecutors argued that the fact their adult children became dependent on them is in part due to their lack of education.

KNX reporter Margaret Carrero:

If convicted on all counts, the Turpin's each face the prospect of life in prison.

In June, it was reported the Perris couple would be held for trial on dozens of criminal charges.

In denying a defense request to have false imprisonment charges against David Turpin dropped, a Riverside County judge cited the 911 call the couple’s 17-yr-old daughter made – her child-like voice shaking – saying it was compelling to hear her talk about barely, if ever, getting out of the house to the point she did not know her address or neighborhood.

The judge also denied a request to drop the torture charges saying while the evidence showed his wife Louise inflicted much of the physical punishment, including slapping, pinching, and pulling hair so hard it lifted at least one daughter off the ground, it was David’s duty to make sure the children were cared for and he failed to do that.

The judge did dismiss a charge of child endangerment involving the youngest Turpin child saying it appeared the 2-year-old was taken care of. 

After hearing testimony from six investigators for the prosecution, a judge in Riverside County wanted to review his notes and hear arguments before making a decision in June. David and Louise Turpin’s children told investigators about being chained up for extended periods of time as punishment.

Pictures of two of their girls chained to their beds with bruises on their wrists were shown in court. The 17-year-old who escaped and called 911 said she would wake up and not be able to breathe because the house was filthy and stunk because they rarely took showers. Pictures of some of their soiled clothes were also shown. The investigator, who laid them out, said they were heavy and smelled putrid. 

Two investigators who have been working the case involving the couple, said the children they spoke with didn’t have more than a third grade level of education.

The kids described being chained up as a form of punishment.

The Turpin’s 22 year old son had reportedly been chained to his bed, on and off for 6 ½ years. He told detectives his mother called him and his sibling’s suspects – mostly for stealing food. They reportedly never ate breakfast and often had lunch and dinner at the same time because the parents were never awake long enough to separate the meals.

One sibling told investigators their mother would pull their hair and throw them across the room if they didn’t do their home school work correctly.

The Turpin’s are facing dozens of charges including torture and false imprisonment. They’ve pleaded not guilty. 

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