Two of the Turpin sisters, who along with their 11 siblings were held captive by their parents for years, have spoken out about the “hell” they endured.
Disturbing details of the family of fifteen only came to light after Jordan, then 17, escaped their home in Perris, California in 2018 and called 911 using a deactivated mobile phone.
Responding officers initially thought she was ten years old because she was so emaciated.
In an interview, airing on ABC on 19 November, Jordan talks about having the courage to escape.
“My whole body was shaking. I couldn’t really dial 911,” she said.
“I think it was us coming so close to death so many times.
“It was a literally a now or never. If something happened to me, at least I died trying.”
The interview includes previously unseen bodycam footage of the moment police raided the Turpin household.
When police entered what became known as the “house of horrors”, they found 12 children aged between two and 29, some shackled to their beds, malnourished and dirty.
Punishments inflicted by the parents included being beaten, choked, and chained to their beds with no access to the bathroom for months at a time.
“Mother, she choked me and I thought I was going to die,” said Jordan.
Her sister – who is unnamed in the episode preview – added: “The only word I can think to call it is hell.”
She continued: “My parents took my whole life from me, but now I am taking my life back.”
The interview comes a year and a half after Louise and David Turpin were sentenced to life in prison, after pleading guilty to 14 counts each of torture, dependent adult abuse, child endangerment, and false imprisonment.
According to prosecutors, the children were given a single rationed meal per day and were only allowed to shower once a year.
The couple’s youngest child appeared to be the only one who was not abused.
David and Louise Turpin would also bake pies but not let them eat, and buy toys but punish the children for touching them.
Although they spent most of their time in the house the Turpins would occasionally take family trips, including one where they went to Las Vegas for a vow renewal.
Authorities said only one child, a son, was allowed to leave home to attend classes at a community college but was always accompanied by his mother.
“Escape from a House of Horror – A Diane Sawyer Special Event” airs 19 November on ABC and Hulu.
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