A man who went to elementary school with one of the 13 siblings held captive in Perris, Calif., wrote a heart-wrenching Facebook post detailing how she was relentlessly bullied.
Taha Muntajibuddin was reading news reports of the shocking abuse case when he realized he went to Meadowcreek Elementary School in Fort Worth, Texas, with the eldest Turpin sibling.
The now-29-year-old woman was found living in squalid conditions with her 12 siblings in Perris earlier this month after her 17-year-old sister escaped through a window and called 911.
Muntajibuddi shared his “overwhelming sense of guilt and shame” in a lengthy Facebook post last week.
The pediatrics resident doctor described her as “a frail girl” who was the designated “cootie kid” who often wore the same purple outfit.
It was jarring to learn that the girl, who was teased in school for being smelly, “quite literally had to sit in her own waste because she was chained to her bed,” Muntajibuddin wrote.
“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,” he wrote.
David Turpin (2nd R) and Louise Turpin (L) appear in court for their arraignment in Riverside, California U.S. January 18, 2018.
Muntajibuddin credited his former classmate with a “whimsical optimism that couldn’t be dampened” and said he would be rooting for her to live her best life.
The girl’s parents David and Louise Turpin were arrested after the 13 siblings, ages 2 to 29, were found inside the filthy family home. Three were shackled to beds, and all except the youngest child were malnourished.
The couple has pleaded not guilty to torture and other charges.
The Riverside University Health System Foundation, which is collecting money for the siblings, so far has received 1,500 donations totaling $ 120,000, spokeswoman Kim Trone.
People from across the world also have been sending toys, blankets and clothing, she said.
With News Wire Services