Invisible Children

2 children of Arthur and Lori Allain

Content note: Case narratives include descriptions of severe violence inflicted on children, including abuse and neglect, sexual violence, torture, and murder, as well as mentions of suicide and domestic violence. They also include photos of victims and perpetrators of violence.

arthur and lori allain
Arthur Thomas “Tommy” Allain, Jr. and Lori Allain starved and imprisoned their foster daughter, age 10, and physically abused her half-brother John Edwards Jr., age 14. The girl also described being sexually assaulted by her foster father and one of the Allains’ six biological children; however, no charges were filed.

Edwards and his sister were removed from their biological mother Sonya Guntor in 2000. Guntor was a substance abuser and the children had behavioral problems. The state then placed the children with the Allains, who were friends of Guntor. Both Allains had prior criminal convictions. Reports of abuse by the Allains began soon afterwards: five calls came in to the child abuse hotline between September 2001 and September 2002. An investigation by children’s services substantiated the maltreatment reports, but instead of removing the children, children’s services drew up a safety plan with the Allains.

Between January 2001 and May 2004, the Allains kept the girl locked in a bedroom with a double-keyed deadbolt. She only had a bucket to use for a bathroom. The Allains withheld food from her as punishment, claiming that she had an eating disorder that would cause her to vomit. When she was rescued, the girl weighed 29 lbs.

The abuse came to light when her brother John Edwards Jr. ran away from home, having been punched in the chest for giving her food, and reported it to the authorities. At that time, the Allains said, they had been homeschooling her for two years. Both Allains were charged with aggravated child abuse and child neglect and sentenced . In 2008, John Jr. filed a civil suit against the Allains.

Date: May 18, 2004
Brooksville, Florida


Documents: Date:
Couple Accused Of Starving Girl
Girl in foster care with Arthur and Lori Allain 05-18-2004
RE: Aggravated Child Abuse Arrests – Allain 06-18-2004
Couple accused of abusing girl 2004-06-19
Foster parents allege foul play 2004-06-20
Florida couple on abuse counts surrender 2004-06-21
Lawyer: Girl’s life was at risk 2004-06-22
DCF at Starving Girl’s Home 06-22-2004
Malnourished girl thrusts DCF back into spotlight 2004-06-23
Reports vary on abuse suspects 2004-06-24
Agency mishandled case, DCF secretary says 2004-06-25
Accused pair will live apart from four sons 2004-06-26
Troubled siblings’ lives an overlooked trail of abuse, bureaucracy 2004-06-27
Authorities look for couple’s four sons 2004-06-30
DCF will open files for abuse inquiry 2004-07-10
Allain custody decision delayed 2004-07-14
Couple plead not guilty to abuse, neglect charges 2004-07-22
Pre-trial hearing held for Brooksville couple 2004-08-20
Abuse case files will be released 2004-08-21
Report: How Fla. failed 2 children 2004-08-25
Report calls for checks, balances 2004-08-26
How did DCF miss warnings of neglect? 2004-08-29
Agency Under Fire Over Girl, 10, Who Weighed 29 Pounds 09-12-2004
Brooksville couple fights child abuse charges 2004-12-03
Reports detail grim life for kids 2005-06-20
Allains to stand trial beginning this week 2005-10-24
Couple absent for start of abuse trial 2005-10-26
Pair in abuse case land on most wanted list 2005-10-26
3 days of hunting, but no Allains 2005-10-28
Couple vanish, putting abuse case in limbo 2005-11-22
On the lam, and refusing to face judge 2005-12-30
A couple lost, a doctor found, but all still fugitives 2006-01-01
Fugitives lack trust in officials 2006-01-12
Fugitive couple arrested in N.J. 2006-01-12
Fear or guilt? What drove Allains? 2006-01-13
Extradition coming for the Allains 2006-01-14
Allains: Truth yet to be revealed 2006-01-15
Allains’ case reaches the court once again 2006-01-24
New trial date set for Allains 2006-02-09
Defense motions unlikely to win 2006-03-05
Girl testifies that Allains starved her 2006-03-16
Hernando couple guilty of starving child 2006-03-17
For jurors, no question that Allains are guilty of abuse 2006-03-18
Allains each to serve 25 years 2006-04-07
Allains again found guilty 2006-06-06
Allain saga ends with longer sentence 2006-07-14
Foster care contract canceled 2007-03-31
Foster Parents Sued For Abuse 2008-04-10
DCF Seeks To Sever Ties To Allains’ Suit 2008-05-17
Father Follows Son In Suing DCF 2008-11-26
Allains, DCF face news abuse lawsuits 2008-11-28
State to pay abused foster children nearly $4 million 2009-08-05