Multiple charges of child abuse have been lodged against Ruby Franke, a well-known “influencer” blogger and YouTuber. The mother-of-six from Utah, whose YouTube channel “8 Passengers” had 2.5 million subscribers, is now facing a sentence of up to 60 years in jail. The state of Utah has a maximum jail term of fifteen years for the second-degree crime of severe child abuse, which Franke admitted to on four occasions.
After two of Franke’s children were taken from Hildebrandt’s house on August 30th, looking neglected and hungry, the police accused Franke and her co-host, Jodi Hildebrandt, 45, of six charges of child abuse in September. One youngster was physically abused and subjected to long periods of hard labor, including wall sits, lugging heavy book boxes up and down staircases, and working outside in bare feet. When he attempted to run away, the child was repeatedly bound with restraints.
Another child was subjected to the same treatment as her brother: she was secluded and made to complete physical duties and stay outdoors. She was refused food and drink. This child’s severe emotional suffering is the subject of the third and fourth charges. She was nine years old at the time of the abuse.
The sentencing hearing for Franke is set for February 20. Her plea deal includes a promise to testify against Hildebrandt. After first charging Franke and Hildebrandt with two counts of child abuse each, the charges were eventually increased to four. The police records that have not been censored do not reference Franke’s spouse, Kevin Franke.
Following her imprisonment earlier this year, the family was taken aback by the abuse claims. After pleading guilty, Franke was detained until her sentencing on February 20.
Kevin, her husband, has also formally filed for divorce. He is not charged with any crime.