Tucson police have arrested 34-year-old Fernando Richter and 32-year-old Sophia Richter on three charges each of kidnapping, child emotional abuse, and child physical abuse after three sisters—ages 12, 13, and 17—were found malnourished and dirty, telling police they had been imprisoned by their mother and stepfather for two years. Fernando Richter is also facing one count of sexual abuse of a child under 15.
According to Tucson Police Captain Michael Gillooly, the two youngest girls were able to escape to a neighbor's house early Tuesday morning after their stepfather allegedly kicked open the door of the bedroom and threatened them with a knife. When police arrived to the home, they found the oldest sister locked in a separate bedroom. The younger girls said they hadn't seen the older sister in years. They also told officers they hadn't had a bath in over six months and that they were only fed once daily.
A resident who has lived in the neighborhood for almost five years told the Arizona Daily Star that she didn't even know anyone was living in the home, but other neighbors told her they had heard children in the home at night.
The three girls have been removed from the home and Gillooly told reporters at a press conference late Tuesday that "we are doing all we can to make sure these kids are kept safe."
[Screenshot via KGUN9]