Authorities say that when they found Randall Piercy's 9-year-old son, he was sitting on his bed in his underwear, his window was covered with paper, the light switch was taped over, and a soda bottle on the floor was filled with urine. Police say that the boy didn't get medical attention and that Piercy kept him locked in his room. By their account, the Piercy home was a prison. They say the boy never attended school, had no friends and may have been totally cut off from the outside world. They say the child told them he was only allowed out of his room three times a day: once to use the bathroom, and another two times to prepare his own meals. They say he also told police that his parents would leave him locked in the room at night by himself while they left the house for several hours.
Randall Piercy tells a different story. He says he's a loving father, wrongly accused.
Dr. Phil sits down with Jacob, one of Randall Piercy's older sons.
"I heard this story and thought this is unbelievable. This is outrageous. What was going on in this house?" he asks.
"There isn't really any nice way to put it," Jacob replies. "It was like a torture chamber inside that house. That was my own personal prison. There wasn't anything I could do without Randy being right over my shoulder looking, you know, watching what I do."
He says Randall went so far as to give Jacob a camera to carry with him. If he sat at the kitchen table, he had to plug it into a jack that fed into Randall's computer so his father could watch him.
"I couldn't go anywhere in that house without that camera," says Jacob. "I didn't have any privacy. I couldn't even take a shower without him watching me."
"What was the torture chamber part of this?" asks Dr. Phil.
"Anything that I was doing that he didn't appreciate, or he didn't think was right, there would come physical abuse with it. I'm talking punching, slapping, pushing around, pushing through walls. If I wasn't doing something that he wanted me to do, then I would get reprimanded severely for it."
"Hardly ever," Jacob replies. "The only time I was allowed outside was to do calisthenics as a form of punishment. I had a set time that I had to run to the mailbox and back. If I wasn't back in that time, I'd have to do it over, and over and over again until I got it down to that time."
Dr. Phil asks for examples of what Randall did to Jacob.
"I had to get up at 5:30, and I had to be on my computer doing school work, or I would get in trouble for it. There was one specific day that I didn't get up at 5:30. It was 5:35, and he came in my room and choked me."
"Show me what you mean," says Dr. Phil.
Jacob makes a choking gesture with his hands and says, "He took his hands and he just, like, squeezing and then shakingâ€¦"
"Both hands," Dr. Phil clarifies.
"Until I got up," says Jacob.
"Randy had assumed that I was lying about a situation. He was pushing me around in the kitchen, and it got to the point where he had a butcher knife," he says, gesturing to indicate a knife about two inches wide and seven inches long. "He had the knife at my throat, and he said, 'If you don't tell me the truth, I will cut you.' I had to change my story because I didn't want to die."
Jacob also claims that Randy also pulled a gun on him, and Dr. Phil asks what happened.
"I told him whatever he wanted to hear," says Jacob. "He looked like he was going to kill me. There were many times where I thought I was going to die in that house."
"I would see him get beaten a lot," says Jacob, "and there was a chamber " plywood, about five feet high, four feet wide, like, blocking him in a little corner of my room. It was bolted into the wall; three padlocks, one on the top, one in the middle, and one on the bottom. Nobody was allowed to get him out unless Randy said it was OK." Jacob says his little brother was three or four at this point.
"Was it dark inside this chamber?" asks Dr. Phil.
"It was open on top, so he would get the light that was coming in from my portion of the room," says Jacob.
"Did you ever go to Randy and say, 'You can't lock him up like an animal. Let him out'?" asks Dr. Phil.