Tucson Sisters Imprisoned for Months; Locked in Bedrooms and Subjected to Physical and Sexual Abuse
On Wednesday, November 27, 2013, the Tucson Police Department announced the arrest of a mother and stepfather on numerous charges of child abuse, including suspicion of kidnapping, emotional child abuse, physical child abuse, and sexual abuse with a person younger than 15. According to police, three sisters – ages 12, 13, and 17 – were imprisoned in bedrooms in their house for months, and possibly up to two years. Police officials reported that the girls were malnourished and that they told officers that they had not been allowed to bathe in up to six months.
The conditions of the home and imprisonment described by the police were horrific. Police stated that the bedrooms had alarm systems set up and shuttered vents, and that the girls were apparently being monitored by video and were subjected to blaring music in their rooms at all hours.
The conditions were discovered when the younger girls managed to get out of the house and went to a neighbor’s house after the stepfather allegedly tried to break down the girls’ bedroom door while brandishing a knife. After the neighbor called the police, officers investigated the home where they subsequently found the 17 year old.
The girls were all taken in by CPS.
How Could This Abuse Have Been Prevented?
If the facts alleged by the police are substantiated and the couple is convicted of child abuse and other charges, a natural question is “how could this abuse have been prevented?” Did neighbors or family members have any reason to suspect that something was not right? Had there been any past incidents of abuse or suspected abuse filed against the parents? As the details and facts emerge through police investigation and court proceedings, we will all learn more about circumstances surrounding this tragic case.
Credit for Posting –
Arizona Daily Star, Police review journal of Arizona Teen held captive, November 27, 2013, http://azstarnet.com/news/state-and-regional/police-review-journal-of-arizona-teen-held-captive/article_f09e1445-6753-5bd6-8923-9ddde97816f3.html/
Los Angeles Times, November 27, 2013, Tucson sisters were locked in, abused, watched by cameras, police say, http://www.latimes.com/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-ff-tucson-girls-imprisoned-20131127,0,4843931.story#axzz2mFXEFue8