News Who is Ruby Franke? : Popular Family Vlogger Faces Allegations of Child Abuse
Who is Ruby Franke? : Popular Family Vlogger Faces Allegations of Child Abuse
In the world of YouTube, ordinary individuals can rise to extraordinary fame, and Ruby Franke and her family are prime examples of this phenomenon. Operating under the YouTube channel '8 Passengers,' Ruby and her husband, Kevin, garnered nearly 2.5 million followers by sharing their lives, which revolved around parenting their six children: Shari, 20, Chad, 18, Abby, 16, Julie, 14, Russell, 12, and Eve, 10. Their content often featured homeschooling and their commitment to the Mormon faith. However, recent events have cast a shadow over their once-idyllic family image, as Ruby faces arrest on charges of alleged aggravated child abuse.
The Accusations Against Ruby Franke:
The turning point occurred on August 30th when one of Ruby's children escaped from the home of their business partner, Jodi Hildebrandt. The child appeared emaciated, malnourished, with open wounds and duct tape binding their extremities. This shocking discovery prompted a police investigation, which revealed that at least one other child in the household was also suffering from malnourishment.
Ruby Franke now faces two counts of alleged aggravated child abuse, defined in Utah as acts that 'inflict upon a child serious physical injury' or 'cause or permit another to inflict serious physical injury upon a child.' Jodi Hildebrandt, who runs the 'Connexions' life coaching business featuring Ruby in its YouTube content, has been arrested on similar charges.
Past Concerns About Parenting:
Ruby Franke's parenting methods have faced scrutiny in the past. Viewers of the '8 Passengers' channel expressed alarm when her son, Chad, revealed in a now-deleted video that he was forced to sleep on a beanbag for seven months as a disciplinary measure. Another deleted video featured Ruby refusing to provide lunch to her six-year-old daughter, Eve, as a form of punishment.
This public concern led to a petition to send Child Protective Services to the Franke household in Utah. However, the case was ultimately closed due to insufficient evidence.
New Details of Alleged Abuse:
Recent search warrants obtained by American news outlets have unveiled alarming new details regarding the alleged abuse. The warrants indicate that Jodi Hildebrandt used a combination of cayenne pepper and honey to 'dress wounds' on Ruby's two youngest children. The victims reported that they were tied to the ground with ropes, causing the injuries. Authorities also seized various items from Jodi's home, including notes, journals, ropes, handcuffs, and carabiners.
Shari Franke's Estrangement:
The eldest daughter of the Franke family, Shari, had previously spoken about her strained relationship with her family. She eventually cut ties with them in September 2022, citing her parents' involvement in the ConneXions group as the catalyst for her estrangement. Shari expressed feeling spiritually drained when around her family and disagreed with the group's beliefs.
In response to the news of her mother's arrest, Shari shared her relief on social media and called for viewers to share any 'questionable or concerning' video clips related to '8 Passengers' or ConneXions.
After Ruby's arrest, Shari was seen attending a court hearing concerning the custody of her younger siblings. The hearing took place with Shari's father, Kevin, and Ruby appearing virtually from jail. The children are currently in the custody of the Department of Child and Family Services, with efforts being made to keep them together under their father's care.
Kevin Franke's Status:
Kevin Franke has not faced any arrest or charges related to the allegations. While speculation circulates about the status of Kevin and Ruby's marriage, Kevin's lawyer has not commented on the topic of divorce. His primary focus remains on keeping his children together under his care during this challenging period.
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