A former classmate of one of the House of Horrors siblings has revealed she was relentlessly bullied at school for being smelly and was the ‘designated cootie kid’.
Taha Muntajibuddin was reading news reports when he realized he went to Meadowcreek Elementary School in Fort Worth, Texas, with the eldest Turpin sibling, who is now 29.
The woman, who weighed just 82 pounds, was found living in squalid conditions with her 12 siblings in Perris, California earlier this month after her 17-year-old sister escaped through a window and called 911
The eldest of the 13 siblings was relentlessly bullied at school, said former classmate Taha Muntajibuddin
David Turpin, 56, and Louise Turpin, 49, who moved to California in 2010, have pleaded not guilty to multiple counts of torture, child abuse, dependent adult abuse and false imprisonment dating.
When the couple were charged, prosecutors said the abuse had begun when the family lived in Texas.
In a Facebook post, Muntajibuddin, who is a pediatrics resident doctor in Houston, spoke of his ‘overwhelming sense of guilt and shame’ at bullying of the woman was subjected to.
He said he has hoped she used the bullying ‘as ammunition to forge a successful path in life’ but got a ‘rude awakening’ when he read about the case and realized what had happened to her.
‘I’ve been reading these articles and seeing these statements and looking at these pictures, and I can’t help but feel an overwhelming sense of guilt and shame.
All the children, pictured here with their parents, had been subjected to ‘prolonged abuse’, were not allowed to shower more than once a year, and barred from seeing a dentist or doctor
‘Of course, none of us are responsible for the events that ensued, but you can’t help but feel rotten when the classmate your peers made fun of for “smelling like poop” quite literally had to sit in her own waste because she was chained to her bed.
‘It is nothing but sobering to know that the person who sat across from you at the lunch table went home to squalor and filth while you went home to a warm meal and a bedtime story.’
In his post he said the ‘frail girl, had pin-straight hair with bangs, and often wore the same purple outfit’.
‘She was often made fun of by the other third graders because her clothes would sometimes look as though they had been dragged through mud, which she would also smell like on most days.’
The 13 siblings lived at this property in Perris, California after moving from Texas
David Allen Turpin and Louise Turpinare pictured in court last week. Both pleaded not guilty to the multiple counts of torture
One time he remembered ‘my entire third grade class scoffing at her one day’ when a teacher asked her to take a hair scrunchy made form foil wrapper from an old Hershey’s bar out of her hair.
Dr Muntajibuddin said despite her treatment the ‘she had this whimsical optimism to her that couldn’t be dampened, couldn’t be doused no matter what anybody threw at her.
He added that this ‘cheerful disposition’ is what makes him ‘certain’ she will ‘prevail’ despite her ordeal.
After the 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.