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Friday, May 24, 2024
Friday May 24, 2024
Friday May 24, 2024

Youtuber Ruby Franke pleads guilty to child abuse charges after two children hospitalized

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Former 8 passengers youtuber faces sentencing in child abuse case

Popular parenting YouTuber Ruby Franke, formerly known for her channel “8 Passengers,” has pleaded guilty to child abuse charges after her emaciated 12-year-old son sought help from a neighbor. Franke and her business partner, Jodi Hildebrandt, were arrested in August when the malnourished boy appeared at a neighbor’s house with tape around his legs. Another child, a 10-year-old girl, was later found in a similar condition at Hildebrandt’s home.

Franke, who had 2.3 million subscribers on her YouTube channel, documented her family life and parenting style. The mom-of-six faced six counts of felony child abuse, each carrying a prison sentence of up to 15 years and a fine of up to $10,000. On Monday, Franke appeared in court in Washington County, Utah, and pleaded guilty to four counts of aggravated child abuse.

In response to the fourth charge, Franke expressed remorse, saying, “With my deepest regret and sorrow for my family and my children, guilty.” The guilty plea leaves the sentencing decision to the judge, with Franke scheduled for sentencing on 20 February.

Franke’s lawyer, LaMar Winward, claimed that Hildebrandt influenced Franke, leading her to a “distorted sense of morality.” Allegations include Hildebrandt systematically isolating Franke from her family and exploiting her quest for improvement. Hildebrandt, the founder of ConneXions, a controversial life counseling organization, is set to appear in court on 27 December.

Franke, held without bail since her arrest, is pursuing personal growth and rehabilitation, apologizing to and trying to reconcile with her family members. Her husband, Kevin, has filed for divorce, and four of Franke’s children under 18 have been placed in care.

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