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Prosecutors want to keep Turpins from contacting children

The Riverside County District Attorney's Office in Southern California will go to court Wednesday to seek a judge's o...

Posted: Jan 24, 2018 1:31 PM
Updated: Jan 24, 2018 1:31 PM

The Riverside County District Attorney's Office in Southern California will go to court Wednesday to seek a judge's order that would bar David and Louise Turpin from contacting their 13 children before their torture case goes to trial.

A public defender for David Turpin told CNN that his office generally does not oppose protective orders.

"This case is outside the range of the average," David Macher said Tuesday afternoon. Macher said he would need to review the prosecutors' proposal with other attorneys and his client before deciding how to proceed.

CNN also reached out to Jeff Moore, the attorney for Louise Turpin but didn't get an immediate reply. A spokesman for the DA's office, John Hall, said he could not discuss specifics before the hearing.

Authorities have accused David Turpin 56, and Louise Turpin, 49 -- whose children are between 2 and 29 years old -- of beating, choking and tying most of the siblings up as punishment. Prosecutors have not alleged the 2-year-old was tortured. The parents allegedly deprived the children of water and fed them small portions of food on a strict schedule.

The 29-year-old child weighed just 82 pounds, prosecutors said and the other children are so thin they all look younger than their actual ages, authorities said.

The parents have pleaded not guilty to 37 charges. David Turpin also pleaded not guilty to one count of lewd conduct with a minor.

The children -- seven adults, six kids -- are in the hospital, recovering from years of alleged abuse and neglect.

The charges cover the time that the Turpins have lived in Riverside County -- 2010 to the present.

As the criminal case proceeds, the future of the children will likely be decided in another courtroom.

The process to terminate parental rights is determined in dependency court, and birth parents have the right to contest the termination, Amy Heilman, director of foster care and adoption at the Children's Bureau in Los Angeles, told CNN last week.

People from all over the world wanting to help the Turpin children have raised nearly $200,000 to support their medical expenses and education.

A fund launched by the Riverside University Health System -- where the younger sibling are being treated -- has collected over $126,000, according to Erin Phillips, a spokeswoman with the hospital.

A fundraiser started by the Corona Chamber of Commerce has received about $65,000 in monetary donations after collecting enough clothing, hygiene items and toys to meet the immediate needs of the siblings.

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