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YouTube Mom of “8 Passengers” Sentenced to Prison for Child Abuse

If you have ever seen clips of the family 8 Passengers on YouTube or even TikTok, I am sure you are able to notice the uneasy, eerie behavior of the mother, Ruby Franke. Her page has been alive since 2015, documenting the Franke's life in their eight person family. Ruby and Kevin Franke are the mom and dad to six children: Shari, 17, Chad, 15, Abby, 13, Julie, 11, Russell, 8, and Eve, 6. The Frankes have nearly 2.5 million subscribers on their channel, all of whom tuned in to Ruby Frankes annual vlogs of what her family was up to for the day. Though, many subscribers began to become suspicious of her behavior and how she would treat her children.

Here's why:

Viewers of this channel would often raise concerns about Ruby’s parenting methods. For example, she canceled Christmas for two out of six of her children, taking away a child’s bedroom for seven months, forcing him to sleep on a beanbag, and much worse behind the scenes. These punishments were all for little things like playing pranks on the other children. Ruby would also withhold food from her children and stating that her six year old daughter should go hungry because she forgot to bring her packed lunch to school. When she confessed these behaviors on her YouTube channel, it raised suspicions from viewers and many created videos discussing how these kids were getting abused.

 One prosecutor described it as “concentration camp” conditions for her children.

Along with Ruby Franke, the mom of this family, Jodi Hildebrandt was also responsible for the treatment of the children. Jodi was Ruby’s business partner who openly admitted she allowed and partook in the abuse of these children, specifically the two youngest, Russell and Eve.

How did they finally get caught after 9 years?

One of their sons escaped from a window in Jodie’s home and went to a neighbor's door asking for food and water. He was extremely malnourished and emaciated. The neighbor called the cops and later discovered the boy had open wounds all over his body and duct tape wounds on his wrist and ankles. They also discovered that one of their daughters was similarly malnourished. The children were taken to the hospital and Ruby and Jodi were charged with six counts of felony child abuse. Washington County Attorney’s Office in Utah accused both women of “causing or permitting serious injury,” including, physical injuries, torture, starvation, malnutrition, and severe emotional harm. Ruby Franke cried in court as she was sentenced to up to 30 years in prison for child abuse

Franke’s eldest daughter, Shari, posted on her Instagram story: “Finally, me and my family

are so glad justice is being served.” The media's suspicions had been right, and the family is able to live freely without being under the constraint of these two women.

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