YouTuber Ruby Franke Sentenced to 4 to 60 Years in Prison for Child Abuse

YouTuber Ruby Franke Sentenced in Child Abuse Case

Content warning: This story discusses child abuse.

Ruby Franke continues to face the legal repercussions of her crimes.

The former YouTuber, who gave parenting advice on the platform before being arrested on child abuse charges in August, was given four consecutive one to 15 year sentences (equal to four to 60 years) during a Feb. 20 hearing.

According to NBC News, Franke's exact time behind bars will be determined by the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole.

"I am humbled and willing to serve a prison sentence," Franke told Judge John Walton during her court appearance. "I understand this is going to take time."

Her business partner Jodi Hildebrandt also received a four to 60 year prison sentence on Feb. 20.

The judge's decision comes two months after Franke—who shares six kids with estranged husband Kevin Franke—plead guilty to four felony counts of second-degree aggravated child abuse.

Authorities in Utah announced Franke's arrest over the summer after a dispatch center received a report of a "juvenile asking for help."

"The calling party stated the juvenile appeared to be emaciated and malnourished, with open wounds and duct tape around the extremities," an Aug. 31 press release from the Santa Clara-Ivins Public Safety Department read. "The juvenile was asking for food and water."

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Officials stated that the young person's condition was so severe that they were taken to a local hospital. After police went to the child's home, they found another minor in a similar state of malnourishment and transported them to the hospital as well.

YouTuber Ruby Franke Sentenced to 4 to 60 Years in Prison for Child Abuse

According to the release, authorities obtained a warrant and conducted a search of the home, finding evidence "consistent with the markings found on the juvenile." 

At that point, four minor children were placed in the care of Department of Child and Family Services while Franke and Hildebrandt were arrested. In December, Hildebrandt—a mental health counselor—pleaded guilty to four counts of second-degree felony aggravated child abuse, per court documents viewed by Today.

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Following their arrests, a number of Franke's relatives spoke out against her, including sisters Ellie Mecham, Bonnie Hoellein and Julie Deru.

"For the last 3 years we have kept quiet on the subject of Ruby Franke for the sake of her children," they wrote in a joint statement shared to their Instagram accounts on Aug. 31. "Behind the public scene, we have done everything to try and make sure the kids were safe. We wouldn't feel right about moving forward with regular content without addressing the most recent events. Once we do, we will not be commenting on it any further."

"Ruby was arrested which needed to happen. Jodi was arrested which needed to happen," their message continued. "The kids are now safe, which is the number one priority."


Franke's husband officially filed for divorce from the former vlogger in late November, according to docs obtained by NBC News, two months after he denied any involvement in the abuse case.

"He is a good person, he's very gentle," his lawyer said on Good Morning America Sept. 6. "He's a very gentle guy. And no one has ever made any allegations that he's physically abused those kids or anyone else."

(NBC and E! News are part of the NBCUniversal family.)

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