Calif. Parents of 13 Enter Plea in Torture Case

It's a guilty plea for David and Louise Turpin
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 23, 2019 8:30 AM CST
Calif. Parents of 13 Enter Plea in Torture Case
David Turpin, right, and wife, Louise, left, listen to the judge, along with attorney Allison Lowe, during a courtroom hearing on Friday in Riverside, Calif.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, Pool)

A new development in the case of David Turpin, 57, and his wife, Louise, the California couple accused of holding their 13 children captive inside their home: a guilty plea on charges including torture, child endangerment, false imprisonment, and others. CNN notes Louise Turpin, 50, could be seen crying as Judge Bernard Schwartz read the charges aloud in a Riverside courtroom Friday. "The defendants ruined lives. So I think it's just and fair that the sentence be equivalent to first-degree murder," Riverside County District Attorney Mike Hestrin said at a news conference, per NPR.

Hestrin also says he's spoken to the Turpins' kids and "they all are relieved to know this case has been resolved" and that there won't be a trial—a fact that helped prosecutors agree to the plea deal, as they didn't want to put the children through that. "We decided that the victims have endured enough torture and abuse," Hestrin said. Meanwhile, an attorney for the adult Turpin kids tells CNN they're doing "very well." "They have been living together, getting their education, and moving their lives forward," Jack Osborn says. "They are all extremely bright, incredibly strong, and resilient. They have been supportive of each other. They view themselves as survivors." Sentencing for the Turpins is set for April 19; they each face 25 years to life behind bars. (More David Turpin stories.)

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