Home » Ruby Franke claims she was deceived by a ‘dark delusion’ as she is sentenced over child abuse: Updates

Ruby Franke claims she was deceived by a ‘dark delusion’ as she is sentenced over child abuse: Updates

by John Jefferson
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YouTuber Ruby Franke apologises to children as judge sentenced her to 60 years

Former family vlogger Ruby Franke her business partner Jodi Hildebrandt were sentenced to four to 60 years in prison on Tuesday for what the prosecution called described as “concentration camp-like” child abuse.

In a tearful statement made in court, Franke claimed she was deceived by a “dark delusion.”

“I was led to believe the world was an evil place,” Franke said. “For the past four years, I have chosen to follow counsel and guidance that have led me to a dark delusion.”

Franke told Judge Walton that she was under the influence of Hildebrandt, who was sentenced on the same child abuse charges. The two women will serve their sentences consecutively.

The mother-of-six was once a YouTube sensation, drawing in millions of subscribers to her channel where she offered parenting advice. But her reputation unravelled when she and Hildebrandt were arrested in August 2023 for abusing her children.

It came after one of Franke’s sons escaped Hildebrandt’s home and fled to a neighbour’s home, who called 911.

The malnourished boy said Hildebrandt put cayenne pepper and honey on their wounds that were caused by being tied with the rope, according to arrest warrants.

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PHOTOS: Disgraced YouTubers sentenced on child abuse charges

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 22:00

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See it: Ruby Franke apologies to her ‘six little chicks’ for abusing them

Franke issued a tearful apology to her children for abusing them before being sentenced on Tuesday.

“To my babies, my six little chicks. You are part of me,” the former Youtuber said.

“I was the mama duck who was consistently waddling you to safety. I can see now that over the past four years, I was in a deep undercurrent that led us to danger.”

YouTuber Ruby Franke apologises to children as judge sentenced her to 60 years

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 21:00

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How the child abuse came to light

On the morning of 30 August 2023, Ruby Franke’s 12-year-old son climbed out of the window of Jodi Hildebrandt’s home, escaped the property and ran over to a neighbour’s house asking for food and water, according to arrest records.

The caller told officials that the child appeared to be “emaciated” and “malnourished” and had open wounds and “duct tape around the extremities”, the Santa Clara-Ivins Public Safety said.

Arrest records noted that the boy had “deep lacerations” due to “being tied up with rope”. Authorities said that the 12-year-old’s condition was “so severe” he was seen by emergency responders and was taken to hospital.

Officers arrived at the home and carried out a search, where they found another child, a 10-year-old girl, in a “similar physical condition of malnourishment” and was also transported by EMS to hospital for treatment.

Santa Clara-Ivins Public Safety said that the Department of Child and Family Services was contacted, and four minor children were taken into the agency’s care.

Franke and Hildebrandt were then both arrested that same day and later charged with six felony counts of aggravated child abuse.

The affidavit acknowledged that two days before the incident, “Ruby Franke was seen on a YouTube video filmed in Mr Hildebrandt’s downstairs”, which showcased that the women were “present in the home and having knowledge of the abuse, malnourishment, and neglect”.

The 12-year-old boy later told police that Hildebrandt would put cayenne pepper and honey on their wounds that were caused by being tied with the rope, warrants detailed.

The warrant also revealed that officers found “Scott’s Tape and Saran wrap”, as well as papers, notes, a journal, two bowls containing a red liquid with a metal spoon, two super absorbent dressings, two “Coban bandages” with four white ankle socks, three sets of “a brown and white rope”, two handcuffs and three carabiners.

Officers also allegedly found a “possible safe room” in the basement of Hildebrandt’s home, records state.

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 20:00

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Ruby Franke’s parents say she was ‘deeply brainwashed’ after meeting Jodi Hildebrandt

Ruby Franke’s parents provided a written statement prior to the sentencing on Tuesday that claimed she was a different person after she sought out a therapist to help one of her children.

That therapist was Jodi Hildebrandt, who became her mentor in 2020.

“We noticed a shift in Ruby’s thinking the summer of 2020 and by that fall she cut all ties to us, her siblings, and close friends,” her parents wrote.

“For three years what brief communications we had with her she accused us of either things that never happen or she grossly exaggerated the events that did. She was delusional. She was so deeply brainwashed we could not recognize her.”

Following her arrest, Franke became herself again, they said, writing that “she expressed her gratitude for being incarcerated and felt the mighty wakeup call was a huge blessing.”

“As her mother and father, we plead with you to show her as much mercy as you possibly can. Hopefully in time she will have a relationship with her children and they will remember the mother she once was to them and will find it in their hearts to forgive her, this would be the greatest healing balm of all for them.”

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 19:00

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Ruby Frank’s children ‘had smirks and looked shocked’ during Jodi Hildebrandt’s remarks

Ruby Frank’s younger children were not in court, but her older children Shari and Chad were present for the sentencing, according to local reporters in the courtroom.

At a press conference that followed the hearing, a reporter stated that the two children “had smirks and looked shocked” when Jodi Hildebrandt said she loved their siblings, whom she had abused.

Before being sentenced, Hildebrandt made a statement to the court:

“I sincerely love these children. I desire for them to heal physically and emotionally. One of the reasons I did not go to trial is that I did not want them to emotionally relive the experience which had been detrimental for them. My hope and prayer is that they will heal and move forward to have beautiful lives.”

Hildebrandt’s attorney Douglas Terry responded to the reporter: “That doesn’t surprise me, but … she was sincere in that statement.”

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 18:00

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Ruby Franke’s children were in a ‘concentration camp-like setting’

Prosecutor Eric Clarke said Ruby Franke’s children were in a “concentration camp-like setting” and spelled out disturbing details in court on Tuesday at the momfluencer’s sentencing.

“The children were regularly denied food, water, beds to sleep in and virtually all forms of entertainment,” he said. “They were isolated from others and were hidden when people came to visit the house … the children were forced to do physical tasks, like carrying … boxes up and down stairs and wall sits or sitting against a wall without a chair or a stool for hours at a time.”

He continued: “They were also forced to do manual labor outdoors and in the extreme summer heat, at times without shoes or socks. They were forced to stand outside on a cement patio in the summer heat for hours, and even days at a time. They were beaten … both children had extensive physical injuries from the abuse that required hospitalization when they were found. The injuries from the binding to the 12-year-old are particularly awful.”

“Had the older of the children not had the courage to run away and ask a neighbor to call the police, heaven only knows how much longer he could have survived in that situation.”

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 17:00

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Watch: Ruby Franke sobs in court as she apologises to children she abused

YouTuber Ruby Franke apologises to children as judge sentenced her to 60 years

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 16:00

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What did Ruby Franke do?

The 41-year-old Utah mother of six admitted to a slew of horrific acts that included forcing them to work outside in the sweltering heat without adequate water until they “blistered”.

She tried to convince her children that they were evil and possessed and that the “punishments” were necessary to repent. She described the abuse as “acts of love”.

The disturbing details were revealed in Franke’s statement filed in court in support of her guilty pleas in which she stated she abused two of her children in Washington County from May 22 until her arrest on 30 August.

Franke further admitted to forcing the boy into long hours of physical tasks, working outside in the summer without shoes or adequate water. He received “repeated and serious sunburns” that blistered after he was “forced to stand in the direct sunlight for several days.”

The boy was denied sufficient food, and when given food he was given very plain meals while others in the house ate regular and more flavorful meals, according to the plea agreement.

Franke also admitted to kicking her son while wearing boots, holding his head under water and “cutting off oxygen by placing her hands over his mouth and nose.”

Ropes were used to tie together handcuffs that secured his hands and feet as he lay on his stomach, lifting his arms and legs off the ground and injuring his wrists and ankles, the plea agreement stated.

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 15:00

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ICYMI: ‘Momfluencer’ Ruby Franke and Jodi Hildebrandt sentenced in child abuse case

Former family vlogger Ruby Franke and her business partner Jodi Hildebrandt were sentenced to four to 60 years in prison on Tuesday for what the prosecution called described as “concentration camp-like” child abuse.

Franke said she was under the influence of her business partner, Jodi Hildebrandt. The Utah mental health counselor, who had been hired to work with Franke’s youngest son before going into business with her, also received four consecutive prison sentences of one to 15 years.

However, the women will only serve up to 30 years in prison due to a Utah state law that caps the sentence duration for consecutive penalties. The Utah Board of Pardons and Parole will consider their behavior while incarcerated and determine how much of that time each will spend behind bars.

The mother-of-six was once a YouTube sensation, drawing in millions of subscribers to her channel where she offered parenting advice. But her reputation unravelled when she and Hildebrandt were arrested in August 2023 for abusing her children.

It came after one of Franke’s sons escaped Hildebrandt’s home and fled to a neighbour’s home, who called 911.

The malnourished boy said Hildebrandt put cayenne pepper and honey on their wounds that were caused by being tied with the rope, according to arrest warrants.

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 14:00

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What happened to Ruby Franke’s husband Kevin Franke?

Ruby Franke and her husband, Kevin Franke, launched “8 Passengers” on YouTube in 2015 and amassed a large following as they documented their experiences raising six children.

She later began working with Hildebrandt’s counseling company, ConneXions Classroom, offering parenting seminars, launching another YouTube channel and publishing content on their shared Instagram account, “Moms of Truth.”

Kevin Franke, the husband of disgraced the YouTube vlogger, filed for divorce in November 2023, months after she was first charged with felony child abuse.

Just ahead of her sentencing on Tuesday, his attorney issued this statement to Law&Crime:

“We trust the judge to sentence them both to 1-15 years for each of the four counts, to run consecutively, and then let the Utah State Board of Pardons decide if that should be shortened or other conditions imposed. The treatment these children received at the hands of those whom the children had a right to trust, was horrific and inhumane, both physically and psychologically.  Kevin res focused on the rehabilitation of these sweet and vulnerable children so that they might return to a normal life as soon as possible.”

Andrea Cavallier21 February 2024 13:00

Read the full article here

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