David and Louise Turpin’s home was dubbed the “House of Horrors” last year after it was revealed that they held 12 of their children captive in horrendous conditions.
The abuse was uncovered in January 2018 when their 17-year-old daughter managed to escape the house and call for help, a moment she’d been planning for two years.
Authorities discovered that the California parents had chained their children to furniture, rarely fed them, and subjected them to cruel punishments that were deemed torturous. The couple’s 2-year-old daughter was the only child not abused.
On Friday, the couple was handed their sentence.
The Turpins, who pleaded guilty to multiple abuse charges in February, were sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 25 years, Fox News reports.
The judge called the parents treatment of their children “selfish, cruel and inhumane.” Judge Bernard Schwartz said:
“You have severed the ability to interact and raise your children (that) you have created and brought into this world.”
Their children were aged two to 29 at the time of their rescue. They were malnourished, and many of them had stunted growth due to deprivation.
At least two of their daughters were left unable to bear children due to the mistreatment. One girl, identified as Jane Doe No. 4, told her parents in court:
“My parents took my whole life from me, now I’m taking my life back. Life may have been bad, but it made me strong. I saw my dad change my mom, they almost changed me. I’m a fighter, I’m strong.”
Both parents made written statements in court stating that they love their children. The father said:
“I’m sorry if I’ve done anything to cause them harm… I am so proud of each and every one of my children,” he continued. “I miss all of our children and I will be praying for them.”
Louise Turpin made similar sentiments, adding, “I wish I could tell them I’m sorry.”