Turpin siblings: Foster family forced children to eat own vomit, told them to kill themselves, claims lawsuit
This article contains information that could be traumatic for some readers. Discretion is advised.
Six Turpin children, who were rescued along with their seven siblings from their biological parents David and Louise Turpin in 2018, have now accused Riverside County and a private foster care agency of consciously putting them with a foster family that not just tortured them sexually, emotionally, and physically, but also encouraged them to take their lives. The siblings are suing the county and ChildNet Youth and Family Services along with 50 unnamed defendants in a lawsuit filed on Tuesday, July 19.
The victims, identified only as Jane Doe 5 and John Doe 6, have alleged multiple violations of the child abuse and Neglect Reporting Act, negligence, and breaches of duties. The plaintiffs alleged that they were put under the care of “Mr and Mrs O”, as mentioned in the suit, and their adult daughter by the county and ChildNet despite knowing that “they were unfit”. The siblings stayed with their alleged abusers from early 2018 to March 2021.
The complaint stated, “Defendants knew that they were unfit to be foster parents, particularly for children as vulnerable as the plaintiffs, because Mr and Ms O had a prior history of physically and emotionally abusing children as well as severely neglecting children who had been placed in their care. Defendants were aware of credible reports of abuse and neglect committed by Mr and Mrs O and their adult daughter. However, defendants did not act upon that information.”
As per the suit, the allegations against the foster parents, include Jane Doe 5 and her siblings being sexually abused by Mr O. The man is accused of “grabbing and fondling their buttocks, legs, and breasts, kissing them on the mouth and making sexually suggestive comments.” He, along with his wife and daughter, also allegedly tortured the siblings physically by “pulling their hair, hitting them with a belt, and striking their heads,” according to the suit filed.
Besides, the three accused reportedly forced the children to “eat excessive amounts of food, which led to eating disorders” and also ordered them “to eat their own vomit” if they puked. The lawsuit added that the foster family chastised the siblings by saying they were “worthless, would never be loved, and should commit suicide”.
The complaint read, “Defendants owed a duty of care to plaintiffs to protect them from abuse and neglect. This duty arose from the defendants’ role as the foster family agency that certified Mr and Ms O. as foster parents, placed plaintiffs in the home, and oversaw plaintiffs while they lived in the home, including visiting them on a weekly basis.”
It further reads, “Defendants breached this duty of care by, among other things, failing to report the abuse and neglect by the foster parents to child protective services or law enforcement, actively withholding this information from the authorities, placing plaintiffs in the home and allowing plaintiffs to remain in the home for three years despite being aware of the ongoing abuse and neglect detailed above.”
Elan Zektser, the siblings’ attorney, said, “The foster family that has been charged with horrific criminal crimes is only the tip of this iceberg. The County of Riverside and ChildNet turned their heads and closed their eyes as some of Riverside's most vulnerable children were being horrifically abused for a second time. This is simply unacceptable.”
The lawsuit has not revealed the full names of the foster parents. However, according to multiple media reports, the name of the members of the foster family are Marcelino Olguin, 63, Rosa Olguin, 58, and Lennys Olguin, 37. All three were arrested in March 2021 by the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office deputies for allegedly abusing nine foster children, including the Trupin siblings. While the male was reportedly charged with lewd acts on a child under age 14, lewd acts on a minor 14 or 15, false imprisonment, and willful child cruelty, the mother-daughter duo face charges of false imprisonment, willful child cruelty, and dissuading a witness.
Meanwhile, the Riverside County Department of Public Social Services officials, in a statement to The New York Post, said that they “deeply care about the safety and wellbeing of every single child under our care". They added, "Our hearts go out to the Turpin siblings. Any instance when a child is harmed is heartbreaking. We continue to evaluate our practices with a critical eye and are committed to understanding and addressing the root cause. This includes expanding the availability of quality and safe placements for all children in foster care.”
ChildNet Youth and Family Services’ spokesperson Brett Lewis, said, “At this time, our organization is not at liberty to disclose facts or discuss the allegations made in the complaint. We look forward to providing the facts at the appropriate time in court. Our agency has been serving California’s most vulnerable, traumatized youth for over 50 years. We have a strong track record of providing excellent care and continue to demonstrate our commitment to these children.”
If you or anyone you know suspects child abuse, you are urged to immediately call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential and the hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.