Three teen sisters held captive in a Tucson home for two years were subjected to constant loud music and white noise day and night, police said Wednesday.
The girls, ages 12, 13, and 17, were locked in separate bedrooms rigged with elaborate alarm systems for up to two years.
Loud music was played in their rooms, or white noise if they seemed to enjoy the music.
"What the kids are telling us, it was 24-7 either loud music or static," Police Chief Roberto Villasenor said.
They were under constant video surveillance by their mother and stepfather, Sophia and Fernando Richter. Police believe the video footage may have been streamed outside of the home.
They had to ask for permission to use the bathroom and were forced to use their closets if permission was denied.
Tuesday morning two of the girls escaped the home while running away from their knife-wielding stepfather, according to Villasenor. They ran to the house of a neighbor.
When police arrived at the home, another sister, age 17, was found inside.
The couple was charged with kidnapping and child abuse. Fernando Richter is also charged with sexual abuse of a person under the age of 15.
Malnourished and filthy, the girls said they hadn’t been to school in two years.
The oldest girl had a journal in her room detailing 18 months of captivity. It will play a key role in the investigation.
Neighbors said they never saw any signs of abuse in the home.