The abuse was nearly unspeakable, and now the parents who inflicted it on 12 of their 13 children may spend the rest of their lives in prison. David Turpin, 57, and wife Louise, 50, of the Los Angeles suburb of Perris received life terms Friday after pleading guilty to charges that included torture and false imprisonment, reports the BBC. Prosecutors say they abused 12 of their 13 kids, between the ages of 2 and 29 at the time, by beating them, keeping them shackled and malnourished, allowing only once-a-year showers, and generally providing a living environment so filthy it astonished investigators. Before the sentencing, however, some the children forgave their parents.
"Sometimes I still have nightmares of things that had happened such as my siblings being chained up and beaten," said one, but "I love my parents and have forgiven them for a lot of the things they did to us." Another adult sibling, a daughter, said: "Life may have been bad but it made me strong," per the AP. "I fought to become the person that I am. ... I'm a fighter, I'm strong, and I'm shooting through life like a rocket." The mother, Louise Turpin, also spoke and expressed remorse. "I'm sorry for everything I've done to hurt my children," she said. "I love my children so much." The Turpins will be eligible for parole in 25 years. (The family conditions came to light only when a 17-year-old daughter managed to call 911.)