They lived in squalor for years, malnourished and filthy, some chained to furniture, with food strictly rationed and toys left torturously out of reach.
Now six weeks since their rescue, the 13 Turpin children are adapting to a strange new life of liberty, as their parents continue to deny any wrongdoing.
David and Louise Turpin plead not guilty to a further three counts of child abuse in a Californian court on Friday – that’s on top of the 37 counts of torture, false imprisonment, abuse of a dependent adult and child abuse levelled against them after their January 14 arrest. David Turpin has also pleaded not guilty to one count of lewd conduct with a minor.
The children, aged between two and 29, were freed from their Perris home by authorities after one managed to escape and contact emergency services. According to police, the 17-year-old had been so severely malnourished that she looked closer to 10.
All 13 siblings were taken to hospital for treatment, and according to US news network CBS the youngest are split between two foster homes while the seven adults are recovering nearby at Corona Regional Medical Center.
There they are reportedly being exposed to simple things denied to them during their adolescence; iPads, Harry Potter, musical instruments.