The oldest son of the house of horrors siblings excelled at his community college and had been named to the honor roll for two semesters, school officials said Thursday.
Josh Turpin, now in his 20s, attended Mt San Jacinto College for several years. His mother would bring him to school and wait outside his classes for him, prosecutors said.
He did not earn a degree but was on the president’s honor roll in fall 2015 and spring 2016, said college spokeswoman Karin Marriott.
A transcript obtained by ABC News showed he attended classes from 2014 until at least 2016 and sometimes earned 15 credits per semester.
He earned A’s in many classes, including algebra, guitar, public speaking, English fundamentals and freshman composition.
Joe Chermak, who attended a musical performance at the school in May 2016, said he remembered seeing the Turpin family in the audience. The small group of family members took up almost half a row of seats and they were all wearing matching outfits – blue shirts and tan pants, he said.
At first, Chermak said he thought it was a group of kids from another school who came to watch the guitar ensemble with a mix of classical, jazz and musical theater, but then he looked more closely and realized they all seemed very skinny.
‘I noticed that one girl was skinny from her arm and pale,’ he said.
On Wednesday David Turpin, 57, and his wife Louise, 49, were brought before a judge shackled at the ankles and wrists at Riverside County Court in California on Wednesday, where they were formally banned from seeing their children.
Louise Turpin even appeared to crack a smile at one point during the hearing.
The couple, who face almost 40 counts including torture, false imprisonment, abuse on a dependent, and child abuse, were in court for a child protection order hearing.
Although both David and Louise Turpin are currently held on $9 million bail each, prosecutors asked for a protective order for their 13 children in case they are released. It would also prevent the victims from visiting their parents in jail, which could potentially influence the case.
During the brief, eight-minute hearing, presided over by Judge Emma Smith, prosecutors asked for the court to ban the Turpins from having direct or indirect contact with any of their children.
Defense attorneys did not oppose the request.
The order, which expires in January 2021, prevents the couple from coming within 100 yards of their kids or making electronic contact with them or even trying to find out where they are staying.
The judge also prohibited the couple from owning firearms and ordered them to relinquish any firearms they currently own.
Neither David nor Louise spoke during the hearing but nodded to acknowledge they understood the orders.
Louise was seen smiling while consulting with her attorney Jeff Moore after the order was read.
Meanwhile, their children – who were found severely malnourished – remain hospitalized.
Their parents, who moved to California in 2010, have pleaded not guilty to multiple counts of torture, child abuse, dependent adult abuse and false imprisonment dating. They are due back in court on February 23.
When the couple were charged, prosecutors said the abuse had begun when the family lived in Texas.
After their 17-year-old escaped the police responded quickly, and ended up arresting the parents and taking the 13 children into state custody.
It has emerged the 13 siblings rescued will not live together again, despite pleading with the authorities to stay as a family.
The six Turpin children among the 13 found shackled at their home in Perris have been told that they will be split up into two foster homes.
Meanwhile the seven adults, who have developmental issues, will be sent to an assisted living facility, CBS News reported.
About 20 people from across the U.S had offered to take the seven adult children and six minors to keep them together. They’ve also raised $200,000 to support their medical expenses and education.
Meanwhile new CCTV footage was released Tuesday showing the children being rescued from the home by police.
In the dramatic surveillance footage, the children are seen being being escorted from the house by officers after the arrest of their parents David and wife Louise Turpin, 49.
The video shows police at the scene after the 17-year-old escaped through a window, enacting a plan she had in the works for two years.
Officers escort the youngsters from the home, one of whom is carrying her sibling and another runs to catch up.
Police look on as the children aged from two to 29 flee, and an officer standing on the driveway is seen ushering them to safety in the video.
Details of their harrowing plight have started to emerge since the California couple pleaded not guilty on Thursday to nearly 40 counts including torture, false imprisonment, abuse on a dependent, and child abuse. David faces an additional charge of a lewd act on a child under 14.
They denied the charges despite evidence showing how they kept their 13 children in locked in their rooms, chained to beds and allowing them to shower no more than once a year.
The Turpins also starved their children, their 29-year-old daughter weighed just 82lbs, and taunted them with slices of pie.
Among the most shocking claims of abuse are:
- The children were made to stay awake all night and sleep all day, often going to bed at between 4am and 5am
- Their only permitted activity was to keep journals – hundreds of which were recovered and will likely be used as evidence
- David Turpin is accused of a lewd act against one child – one of his daughters, under the age of 14
- The children had been planning to escape for two years before they were rescued
- The 17-year-old daughter who raised the alarm left the house with another sibling but that child became frightened and turned back
- The parents began using chains and padlocks to tie the children to their beds after one escaped with rope. They would sometimes be chained up for months
- One of the older boys was allowed out of the home to attend college classes but his mother accompanied him there, waited for him until it finished then accompanied him home
- The couple’s youngest child, a two-year-old, was the only one they did not starve
- The 29-year-old woman who was rescued weighed just 82 lbs
- The children were tied up or beaten if they washed their hands ‘above the wrist’ because the parents said it amounted to them ‘playing in the water’
- The Turpins kept toys that were still in their boxes at the house but never gave any to the children
Cadaver dogs are being sent into the home to look for the bodies of any children who did not survive the ordeal and DNA tests are being conducted to determine if any of the children have died and are buried in David and Louise’s house of horrors, according to a new report.