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Listen: Here’s what we know so far about 13 siblings in California held captive by their parents

Doc Thompson
Riverside Police Department

What happened?

A girl escaped her California home and called 911 to plead for help, saying that she and her siblings were being held prisoner by their parents.

Authorities found 13 siblings ranging in age from 2 to 29 who “appeared malnourished and very dirty” and were so shockingly emaciated that police were surprised that seven of them were adults … when all of them appeared to be children. The girl who called the authorities appeared to be around 10 years old but was actually 17.

On today’s show, Doc and Kal talked about what we know so far about this strange story.

Are their parents now in jail?

After investigators found some of the children shackled to their beds, David Allen Turpin, 57, and Louise Anna Turpin, 49, were arrested on nine counts each of torture and child endangerment. According to authorities, they were being held in jail with bail set at $9 million each.

The 13 siblings have been hospitalized; police said they were living at the home without access to enough food or water.

How did no one notice that the children were trapped?

Neighbors said that the Turpin family members were known for almost never leaving the house. Otherwise, they looked “normal.” In pictures posted on Facebook, the siblings were dressed alike and all appeared to be young children.

"They were very protective of the kids," David Turpin’s mother, Betty, told CNN. "This is a highly respectable family.”

Grandparents James and Betty Turpin live in West Virginia and told a local ABC outlet that they hadn’t visited the family in California for four or five years.

To see more from Doc, visit his channel on TheBlaze and listen live to “The Morning Blaze with Doc Thompson” weekdays 6 a.m. – 9 a.m. ET, only on TheBlaze Radio Network.

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