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Georgia Man Holds Family Captive in Trailer For 3 Years

Ack, ack, ack. This story! It gives the Austrian incest case a run for its money for sheer disgusting details alone. Raymond Daniel Thurmond, 36, is in jail today and accused of keeping his wife and four kids hostage inside a filthy single-wide trailer. How filthy? I'll allow the police to describe:

  • "The walls looked like they were moving sometimes. There were so many bugs and roaches on the wall. When the door first opened roaches fell from the ceiling down to the floor. So, I knew then we were in for something."
  • "There was garbage packed up to the ceiling. The smell was so overwhelming the investigator had to where a gas mask"
  • "It was probably the most disgusting scene that I've ever been involved in as far as human waste and filth, and the sad thing about it is you had a wife and four kids who were confined to these four walls and were not permitted to go outside."

To see the condition of the kids, and how the case was busted,


The children, aged 14, 13, 12, and nine were never allowed to go or even look outside. The 14-year-old has only completed the first or second grade, they were all severely undernourished, and none of the children have been outside since 2005. Apparently, Thurmond even raped his wife in front of his children.

The case was discovered when the wife finally escaped and went for help. According to investigators, "from what I understand, he just left and didn't come back and she got word somehow. I don't know what happened, but she got word somehow that he got involved with another lady." The neighbors, as is so often the case in stories like this, were stunned.

How is this always the case? Why are the neighbors always the last to know? Perhaps there is hope for the kids; the Austrian children are progressing and have just given the police a gift of appreciation for protecting them. What drives someone to behave this way?

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