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Child Torture Couple On Run

Seven children had their toenails pulled out, were hit with a hammer and starved by a couple who are now on the run from police.
John Dollar, 58, and wife Linda, 51, are the subjects of a huge search after revelations of the abuse emerged on Friday.
The children were removed from the Dollars' home after one of them, a 16-year-old boy who weighed less than 27kg and had injuries on his head and neck, was taken to a doctor.
He alerted authorities who have since taken the children- aged from 12-17- into care.
They told police the Dollars struck them with a hammer, administered electric shocks and used pliers to pull off their toenails.
Sheriff's spokeswoman Gail Tierney said twin 14-year-old brothers were severely malnourished, weighing 16kg and 17kg respectively, about 36kg below the normal weights for their age.
Five of the children also told deputies they were forced to sleep in a locked walk-in closet because the Dollars accused them of stealing food.
Officials declined to describe the relationship between the Dollars and the children, citing privacy concerns, but the couple are not the children's biological or foster parents.
The Dollars had moved with the children in August from Tennesee to Beverley Hills, about 115km north of Tampa, Florida.
The children did not attend school and no other adults had regular contact with them, preventing authorities from intervening sooner, Officer Tierney said.
"My impression was that they were basically prisoners in this home," Tierney said.
"The children have very sweet faces, but when you look at their bodies, I mean, it looks like Auschwitz.
"We are still trying to establish the relationship."
Andrew Ritter, a spokesman for the Children and Families Department in Tampa, said the couple had been licensed as foster parents from March to October, 1995. He did not say why the license was withdrawn.

Sunday Mail (6-2-2005)
Vicki Chachere

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