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Cypress, Texas News

16-Year-Old Malnourished Twins from Cypress TX Break Free From Handcuffs and Courageously Escape from Their Mother

woman and her boyfriend are facing charges in Harris County after a whirlwind of a day that covered two states and five missing children.

According to authorities, it started early Tuesday, Oct. 18, when 16-year-old twins told authorities they were able to escape their home where they were handcuffed. They said they ran from the home and found someone to call the police.

By the time Harris County Precinct 5 constable deputies were able to find the house on Marina Alto Lane (near the intersection of West Road and Fry Road in Cypress), the twins' mother, her boyfriend and their five brothers (ages 8 to 14) were gone.

An AMBER Alert was issued Tuesday afternoon for the five children. Authorities said the boys were with their 18-year-old brother, their biological mother, Zaikiya Duncan, and her boyfriend, Jova Terrell. They said both Duncan, 40, and Terrell, 27, could be charged with injury to a child. It's unclear when they'll be brought back to Texas.

Around 5 p.m., Duncan and Terrell were taken into custody near the Louisiana State University campus in Baton Rouge. Only one child was with them, according to authorities. The couple told investigators that the other boys were dropped off at a relative's house, where they were found and are OK, officials said.

The twins were placed in Child Protective Service custody and were taken to an area hospital to be treated for bruises and malnourishment, according to authorities.

In a story by KHOU-11, the twins described the horrors they had experienced at the hands of their own Mother and her boyfriend.  On October 18, they were able to escape their restraints and ran door to door through the neighborhood for half an hour pleading for help. 

The boy was shirtless, both were barefoot and shivering when a kind woman in a nearby subdivision answered her door and let them inside. 

"They were so skinny and so frail. They just looked like they had been through a lot," the woman said. "They told me that their mom kept them locked in the laundry room, naked, zip tied from the ankles and handcuffed from the wrist."

The twins told investigators they weren't allowed to use the toilet and were forced to drink their own urine and live surrounded by feces in the laundry room. Both were malnourished and the boy had at least one fractured bone that had healed, a source said. They also had bruises, cuts and scars all over their bodies and were extremely thin with their bones sticking out. 


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