Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Ruby Franke’s daughter reveals ‘panic attacks’ after mother’s child abuse arrest

‘Therapy has literally saved me, but God has too,’ YouTuber’s eldest daughter wrote on Instagram

Kelly Rissman
Thursday 26 October 2023 00:17 BST
Police bodycam captures moment neighbours learn Ruby Franke allegedly kept her children in a 'safe'

Ruby Franke’s daughter has opened up about how “difficult” her life has been since her mother’s arrest on child abuse charges earlier this year.

“The last six months have been difficult but I have felt everybody’s prayers,” Shari Franke, the YouTuber’s oldest daughter, said in a video posted by Law & Crime.

The 20-year-old also posted on Instagram on 16 October, writing, “There’s literally not even words to describe how upside down my life has become. I’ve cried, had an infinite number of panic attacks, had way too much ice-cream, and yet life goes on.”

“Therapy has literally saved me, but God has too,” Ms Franke continued.

She added that she has tried to live her life “to the fullest” recently, despite really wanting to “hide away in my apartment.” The Daily Mail reported that she is estranged from her parents.

Her father, Kevin Franke, tried to have Shari arrested for burglary two days after the child abuse arrests, a September police report revealed. He told police that the front door of his home had been “kicked in and damaged,” and some of his electronics were missing; he named his oldest daughter as a suspect.

“Kevin stated that Shari is not allowed in the home, and that he believes she entered unlawfully and he wants her charged with burglary,” the officer wrote.

Ruby Franke —and her business partner Jodi Hildebrandt — were charged with six felony counts of aggravated child abuse after their arrests on 30 August at Ms Hildebrandt’s house in Ivins, Utah.

The pair, who ran a popular YouTube parenting advice channel, came to law enforcement’s attention after Ms Hildebrandt’s neighbour called 911.

The neighbour reported that Ms Franke’s 12-year-old son showed up at his doorstep with “duct tape” covering his ankles and wrists as he begged for food and water. “This kid has obviously... he’s been detained. He’s obviously covered in wounds,” the 911 recording revealed.

Police subsequently searched Ms Franke’s house, where they found a 10-year-old girl who was also allegedly malnourished and suffering from wounds. These two children were then hospitalised.

Although both Ms Franke and Ms Hildebrandt were supposed to appear in court on 18 September for a hearing, it was postponed until after 5 October as the lawyers had asked for a delay in order “to review copious amounts of discovery,” The Salt Lake Tribune reported.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in