'HELL': Turpin siblings held captive in 'house of horrors' speak out

·3-min read

The Turpin siblings who escaped and rang the police, leading to her 12 siblings' freedom, has described what it was like living in such "hell-like" conditions.

Jordan Turpin, who was 17 at the time she escaped, jumped from a window from her Californian home in January 2018, and told police she and her siblings were being abused by their parents, leading to their arrests.

Jordan and her elder sister, Jennifer, are speaking out for the first time about the horrific conditions they were forced to endure until they were freed.

Image of Jennifer and Jordan Turpin from the interview with Diane Sawyer. Jennifer, left, with dark brown hair and green long sleeve dress and Jordan, right, blonde hair and white jacket.
Jennifer and Jordan Turpin have spoken out for the first time. Source: ABC

Jordan, now 21, recalled not even knowing what a footpath was as she had only been outside the house a handful of times.

"I was actually on the road [when I made the call],” she told ABC reporter Diane Sawyer.

"Because I didn’t even know about the sidewalks. You’re supposed to be on the sidewalk, but I’d never been out there."

Turpin Speaking out for the first time

The 13 Turpin siblings were all aged between two and 29 when they were freed from the home in 2018.

Jordan struggled to tell authorities her address when she made the call, so they used GPS tracking from the mobile phone to track where she was.

In the call, which can be heard in the preview for the exclusive interview, the then-teenager reveals she's being abused.

An old photo of the Turpin family at what appears to be their parents' wedding, with the girls wearing pink and red dresses and the boys wearing black suits and pink ties.
The Turpin children were held captive in their house. Source: Facebook/ABC

"My two little sisters right now are chained up," Jordan told the dispatcher.

“Um hello? I just ran away from home because I live in a family of 15," she said. 

"Okay? Can you hear me? And we have abusing parents. Did you hear that?"

Parents sentenced to 25 years in prison

Two hours after placing the call, police came to the home to find two of her siblings chained to their beds and arrested their parents David, then 57, and Louise, 50.

Jennifer said the “only word” she could use to call their life inside the house with their parents was “hell”.

Mug shots of David Turpin, grey/light brown hair to chin with fringe and Louise Turpin, dark/ greying hair and dark eyes.
David Allen Turpin and Louise Anna Turpin were sentenced to 25 years in prison. Source: AP

“My parents took my whole life from me, but now I am taking my life back,” she said

“I think it was us coming close to death so many times. It was literally a now or never. If something happened to me, at least I died trying," Jordan said.

David and Louise Turpin were arrested in January 2018.

They pleaded guilty to one count of torture and one count of dependent abuse as well as multiple counts of false imprisonment, child endangerment and adult abuse in 2019.

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