As David and Louise Turpin face numerous charges involving the alleged starvation, abuse, torture, and imprisonment of their 13 kids, a motive remains unclear. That’s led many people to look at their childhoods for answers, especially Louise’s.
While David’s relatives have spoken little about his younger years, two of Louise’s sisters and their cousin have been speaking out on talk shows, distancing themselves from Louise’s alleged atrocities while sharing details from her past.
Louise’s sister Elizabeth Flores and their cousin Patricia spoke to Dr. Oz specifically about the sexual abuse they and Louise were reportedly subjected to while growing up, according to Fox News.
Elizabeth, who is eight years younger than Louise, explained, “So, a family member, a very, very close family member that we’re with daily, abused all the cousins and it was just swept under the rug, I guess? You don’t talk about it. If it comes up, it was like we were lying or something…so we just didn’t talk about it, and we were made to be around this person daily.”
What she said to Dr. Oz matches details she gave earlier to Dr. Phil on “The Dr. Phil Show.”
“After Louise left home is when I have the strong memories [of abuse],” she told Dr. Phil. “I do remember things happening before that, but I guess I’ve just pushed them down and blocked them. The reason I didn’t think about it until all this happened with Louise...it’s like I can’t remember the abuse but I remember things that happened, so I know I was abused.”
She said at that time, Louise was very protective of her whenever their abuser was nearby. Louise did her best to block their abuser from coming into physical contact with Elizabeth.
“Louise was the perfect sister,” Elizabeth recalled, breaking down in tears. “She was so loving and caring and protective.”
But things changed later. Years later at age 19, when Elizabeth spent a summer with the Turpin family at their home in Texas, she says David was “really flirty” and would “say stuff that was really inappropriate that made me feel very uncomfortable.”
She told about times when David would come into the bathroom and watch her shower and make her get out in front of him. Elizabeth spotted Louise with a coat hanger in her hand, so she assumed Louise was the one who always picked the lock to let David into the bathroom.
“[Louise] would laugh and say I was embarrassed because I was red from head to toe,” Elizabeth recalled. “They tried to make it off like it was a joke, like they weren’t doing anything wrong.”
On the Dr. Oz show, cousin Patricia added that she tried to tell her parents about the person molesting her, but they “didn’t do anything” about it.
Heartbreakingly, Patricia continued, “I felt like I have to say this, so, you understand how our childhood was created because the public doesn’t understand. They think, ‘why didn’t you see things' or whatever. We were trained, all of us girls were trained to be fake or to not come forward. That we had to be a certain way all the time.”
But both Patricia and Elizabeth don’t believe the sexual abuse comes even close to fully explaining what Louise is accused of doing to her kids now, from enforcing once-a-day meals and once-a-year showers to keeping them in social isolation and chaining them up for weeks or months at a time without access to a bathroom.
Patricia made it clear that despite the abuse she says Louise suffered in the past, “there is no excuse” for how she was reportedly treating her own kids over the past couple decades.
“I don’t understand how you can go from what I grew up with her knowing her as, to what she is known as today,” Elizabeth added.
Elizabeth and Louise’s younger sister, Teresa Robinett, meanwhile had nothing positive to say about Louise.
In an interview with the UK’s Daily Mail, Robinett said of both David and Louise, “I hope they suffer as much, if not more, than those kids suffered. I hope they torture my sister for the rest of her life.”
Amidst his other charges, David currently faces one count of lewd conduct with a girl under the age of 14. The victim is reportedly one of his daughters.
Our prayers go out to these families as they try to heal. In related news, an expert and a kidnapping victim are answering why the oldest Turpin boy did not every contact authorities or try to escape despite regularly attending college classes.