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13 children hospitalized; parents arrested, charged with torture

Each parent is being held on $9 million bail

Credit: Riverside County Sheriff's Department / NBC Los Angeles (Riverside County Sheriff's Department)

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – A couple is behind bars Monday after authorities said one of their 13 children escaped their home and reported that her siblings were being held captive at their home.

Further investigation revealed several children shackled to their beds with chains and padlocks in dark and foul-smelling surroundings, and the parents were unable to immediately provide a logical reason why their children were restrained in that manner.

Deputies located what they believed to be 12 children inside the house, but were shocked to discover that seven of them were actually adults, ranging in age from 18 to 29. The victims appeared to be malnourished and very dirty.

David Allen Turpin, 57, and Louise Anna Turpin, 49, have been booked on charges of torture and child endangerment. They are each being held in lieu of $9 million bail.

According to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department, a 17-year-old girl fled a house in the 100 block of Muir Woods Road early Sunday morning and was able to call 911 using a cellphone she had taken from the home.

Despite her age, deputies at first believed her to be around 10 years old because of she was emaciated and malnourished.

At the home, deputies found children shackled to beds in "dark and foul-smelling surroundings."