In a highly publicized statement on Nov. 19, Riverside County (the “County”) announced the launch of an investigation led by Larson LLP into allegations regarding the treatment of the 13 Turpin children while under the care of County departments after being rescued from their abusive home in 2018.
Numerous media outlets reported on the County’s executive officer Jeff Van Wagenen’s statement following the promotional video of Diane Sawyer’s interview with two of the Turpin sisters for a “20/20” special airing on Nov. 19 on ABC. ABC News revealed that “some of the Turpin children continue to face challenges and hardships since they were rescued and placed in the care of the county. Some of them have even faced assault and alleged child abuse again.”
Mr. Van Wagenen stated that Larson LLP has been hired “to conduct an independent and comprehensive investigation into what happened in the cases of the 13 Turpin children…specifically, as it related to the recent allegations regarding the care, services, and placement provided to the 13 Turpin siblings by Riverside County departments,” ABC News reported.
The investigation is led by partners Stephen G. Larson and Hilary Potashner. Stephen noted to The Press-Enterprise that, “Before accepting this engagement nearly three weeks ago, I required that the County give my firm complete freedom to pursue all relevant issues in this inquiry,” and that the firm’s focus “would be the level of care and supervision provided by the county.”
County Supervisor Karen Spiegel, who chairs the Board of Supervisors, told The Press-Enterprise, “Former Federal Judge Stephen Larson has impeccable credentials and I am confident that his firm will thoroughly and objectively investigate this issue. Once we have the results of the investigation, the Board of Supervisors are prepared to take immediate and decisive action based on the findings.”
Read the full report by ABC News here and the article by Brian Rokos and Jeff Horseman of The Press-Enterprise here.
Other media coverage includes: