‘I Could See Sadness in His Face:’ Former Classmate of House of Horrors Child Speaks Out
A former college classmate of one of the children imprisoned in a California home said the boy wore the same clothes every day and avoided eye contact.
Angie Parra took a class with one of the older children at Mount San Jacinto College.
She said the boy, who is not being directly named, was famished and at a school potluck ate a lot of food.
“He stood by the table and didn’t sit down,” Parra told NBC4. “He literally ate plate after plate after plate.”
She also noted that the boy looked sad and would avoid eye contact.
“I could see sadness in his face,” she said. “His eyes—he never wanted to make eye contact with anyone.”
The boy was one of 13 siblings rescued from a home in Perris, about 70 miles east of Los Angeles, about a week ago.
One of the siblings escaped the home and called 911, alerting police officers to the plight of her family.
When officers arrived at the house, they found a filthy environment where some of the children had been shackled to beds and other objects using chains and padlocks.
Louise and David Turpin, the parents, were arrested and charged with numerous crimes including torture.
Prosecutors have alleged that the couple was torturing their children for years.
All 13 were malnourished and initial age estimates were low because of the malnourishment.
The children were taken to local hospitals where staff immediately set to work restoring their health and visits with psychologists are planned soon.
Over the weekend it emerged that homicide detectives could use cadaver dogs to search for remains of other children at the so-called House of Horrors where the family was found.
Detectives have had “serious discussions,” reported Crime Watch Daily,” to bring in the dogs not only at the California home but also previously identified homes of the Turpins, such as one in Texas where they lived prior to moving to the West Coast.
Detectives have also discussed using DNA tests to ensure that all 13 children are related because of the lack of paperwork regarding them.
The Turpin parents pleaded not guilty during their first court appearance on Thursday, Jan. 18, and are each being held on a $12 million bail.
Besides torture, they face charges of child abuse and unlawful imprisonment and each could be sentenced to life in prison.