After police arrested David Allen Turpin, 57, and Louise Anna Turpin, 49, for allegedly shackling and torturing their 13 children for years, the children’s maternal aunt provided some insight into the childhood that might have had an impact on at least one of the parents.
Elizabeth Flores, 41-year-old sister to Louise Turpin, detailed chilling accounts of the disturbing abuse she and her sister endured during their childhood, reports the New York Post. According to The Sun, the abuse was documented in a trilogy of Christian self-help books that she co-authored.
“My life was filled with fear starting at a young age,” she wrote in the pages of “Stepping Into Courage.”
“Many things I have gone through as a child have caused deep suffering … Being molested, watching my mom being beaten and raped and being abused myself as a child combined to cause the fear of people, especially men,” she explained.
In the book “Resilience In The Storm,” Flores described horrific abuses carried out against her by a family member she was “supposed to be able to trust” when she was only 9 years old.
“I think I was around 9 years old when a family member that I loved so much and I was supposed to be able to trust molested me,” she wrote, adding that the abuse continued throughout her childhood and teenage years.
It is unclear whether her sister went through similar experiences.
Flores appeared on ABC’s “Good Morning America” to talk about her current relationship and experiences with her sister and her brother-in-law. There, she described a number of disturbing run-ins with the couple.
When asked what she wanted to say to her sister, she said, “I want her to know that she’s still my blood, and I love her.” Flores added that while Louise Turpin’s alleged actions hurt the family, Flores was praying for salvation.
To her nieces and nephews, she said that she wanted to reach out to them and let them know that she and other family members have been trying to make contact with them for several years. Flores previously said that the Turpins thwarted communication attempts from the rest of the family.
David Turpin’s family also commented on the situation. James and Betty Turpin of West Virginia, his parents, told ABC News that they were “shocked” by the allegations. They said they had not seen the couple in at least four or five years.
The couple reportedly kept their 13 children, ages 2 to 29, in subhuman conditions. According to police, they were chained, beaten, only allowed to bathe twice a year and eat once a day and not allowed to go outside. The children reportedly kept journals to cope with their captivity, which are now being reviewed by law enforcement officials.
The couple made their first court appearance last Thursday. There, they face 92 years to life in prison if convicted of all charges, which include torture.