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Classmate Recalls Students Treating Turpin Girl Like Dirt

Taha Muntajibuddin's recollections make for tough reading
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2018 9:24 AM CST

(Newser) – David and Louise Turpin essentially can't have anything to do with their children for the next three years following a judge's Wednesday court order. The Desert Sun reports Riverside County Judge Emma Smith has barred the parents from any attempts at communication with their children, including electronically or by phone, per the Washington Post, until January 2021. They're also prohibited from coming within 100 yards of any of their children—whom they're accused of shackling, starving, and abusing—except in the course of a court hearing. The only contact that's permitted is via their lawyer. A separate Desert Sun piece highlights the recollections of Taha Muntajibuddin, who attended third grade in Forth Worth, Texas, with one of the eldest Turpin girls—and now feels "an overwhelming sense of guilt and shame."

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In a Facebook post, Muntajibuddin writes the girl was the butt of ceaseless jokes and mockery for smelling like mud and worse. She was the "cootie kid," and he recalls the day the whole class teased her after the teacher made her throw out a hair tie she had fashioned out of the "discarded tin foil wrapper from an old Hershey's bar." He says that years later, he searched for her online, imagining that "somewhere, somehow, [she] was probably living her best life ... She was going to be that person at the reunion looking completely flawless and making six figures." His hope was that she would have taken all the cruelty and "used it as ammunition to forge a successful path in life." Knowing her reality, he shares the simple lesson he has learned: "Be nice ... [an] act of kindness and acceptance may be the ray of hope that that person needs." (Louise Turpin's siblings had some weird things to say about their sister.)

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