YouTuber Ruby Franke's Chilling Journal Entries Revealed After Prison Sentence for Child Abuse

Ruby Franke—who is serving four to 30 years in prison on multiple child abuse charges—kept a detailed journal about the mistreatment she inflicted upon her kids, according to prosecutors.

By Gabrielle Chung Mar 26, 2024 1:37 AMTags
Watch: YouTuber Ruby Franke's Journal Entries Revealed

Content warning: This story discusses child abuse.

Details into Ruby Franke's horrific mistreatment of her kids have come to light.

More than a month after the disgraced parenting influencer was sentenced to four to 30 years in prison on child abuse charges, prosecutors released scans from a handwritten diary belonging to Franke that detailed her behavior toward her children.

In the journal, which had the names of Franke's kids redacted to protect their privacy, the 42-year-old described one child as "Satanic."

"He slithers & sneaks around looking for opportunities when no one is watching & then he scurries," she wrote in an entry dated July 10, 2023, which was the boy's 12th birthday. "If he wants to emulate the savior, he needs to be 100% obedient with exactness. No wavering, no hiding."

Elsewhere in the diary, the mom of six detailed how she confronted the same son over his "deviant behavior" by holding him underwater in the family pool.

Influencers Biggest Scandals

"I told him, 'Give your demon friend a message for me. I will not rest. I will not stop,'" she wrote. "'The devil lies and says I'm hurting you, abusing you.'"

In addition to her son, Franke also believed another one of her children was possessed by a demon. In multiple diary entries, the YouTuber described her 9-year-old daughter as "sinful" and "manipulative."


"These selfish, selfish children who desire only to take, lie, and attack have zero understanding of god's love for them," Franke wrote in a July 23, 2023 entry. "Oppositional force is required for growth, development and maturity. [They] have never experienced oppositional force. They are very weak-minded."

Throughout the journal, Franke also seemingly detailed a variety punishments she imposed on her kids, including beating, poking, withholding food and water and forcing them to jump on a trampoline.

"The world we live in today does not support children being uncomfortable," she wrote in an Aug. 15, 2023 entry. "They, the adults, are uncomfortable w/ children being uncomfortable. And so children are comforted, entertained, distracted from the need to confess + change. Stripping down a child's world to the basics of beans + rice + hard work would be considered abuse. And it's not. It's necessary for the prideful child."

Washington County Attorney's Office

Franke and her business partner Jodi Hildebrandt were arrested in August after the 12-year-old boy ran to a neighbor's home for help, according to the Washington County Attorney's Office. Upon further investigation, prosecutors said in a case summary that Franke and Hildebrandt—a mental health counselor—"appeared to fully believe that the abuse they inflicted was necessary to teach the children how to properly repent for imagined 'sins' and to cast the evil spirits out of their bodies."

Three months following their arrest, Franke pleaded guilty to four counts of aggravated child abuse, while Hildebrandt pleaded guilty to four counts of the same charge as part of a plea deal.

Like Franke, Hildebrandt was ordered to spend four to 30 years in prison—the maximum sentence for this kind of an offense—when they were both sentenced in February. 

E! News has reached out to Franke and Hildebrandt's attorneys for comment on the journal entries but hasn't heard back. 

Read on for a complete timeline of the case.

Aug. 30, 2023: Children Found Malnourished

Utah police received a call about a starved child being found, they shared in a press release. The minor—who appeared "emaciated and malnourished" with "open wounds and duct tape around the extremities"—was taken to the hospital in "severe" condition.

He was later identified as YouTuber Ruby Franke's 12-year-old son, according to a probable cause affidavit obtained by NBC News. He had been at the home of Ruby's business partner Jodi Hildebrant and had climbed out of a window before going to a neighbor's house to ask for help, per the document.

Police then searched a nearby home, where another child was found "in a similar physical condition of malnourishment" and was also hospitalized, per the press release.

Authorities later explained that they discovered Ruby's 9-year-old daughter "petrified" while sitting by herself in an empty closet in Jodi's house, per evidence released by the Washington County Attorney's Office.

Aug. 30, 2023: Arrest 

Ruby was arrested for aggravated child abuse charges in Utah along with Jodi, who in 2007 established a life coaching service called ConneXions, which former clients described to NBC News as a "cult-like" program based on principles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Aug. 31, 2023: Ruby's Daughter Speaks Out

On Aug. 31, E! reported that Shari Franke, Ruby's estranged adult daughter, reacted to the news on her Instagram Story.

"Me and my family are so glad justice is being served," wrote Shari, who was born in 2003. "We've been trying to tell the police and CPS for years about this, and so glad they finally decided to step up. Kids are safe, but there's a long road ahead."

Aug. 31, 2023: Ruby's Sisters React to Arrest

Ruby's sisters Ellie Mecham, Bonnie Hoellein and Julie Deru spoke out as well, saying the YouTuber's arrest "needed to happen."

"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 Instagram statement. "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."

The siblings said Ruby's kids are "now safe, which is the number one priority."

Sept. 6, 2023: Charges Filed

The former 8 Passengers YouTuber and her business partner Jodi were each formally charged with six counts of felony child abuse by the Washington County Attorney in Utah.

Sept. 6, 2023: Kevin Franke Breaks Silence

Ruby's husband Kevin Franke came forward to deny involvement in her alleged crimes. His lawyer Randy Kester told Good Morning America the spouses had been living apart for 13 months before the arrest.

"He is a good person, he's very gentle," the attorney said. "He's a very gentle guy. And no one has ever made any allegations that he's physically abused those kids or anyone else." 

Nov. 29, 2023: Kevin Files for Divorce

Kevin officially filed for divorce from the Utah influencer, according to a domestic relations injunction obtained by NBC News.

Dec. 18: Guilty Pleas

E! confirmed Dec. 18 that Ruby had entered a guilty plea for four of her charges. At the time, per the Associated Press, she stated, "With my deepest regret and sorrow for my family and my children, guilty."

Jodi would also plead guilty to four counts of second-degree felony aggravated child abuse.

Feb. 20, 2024: Prison Sentencing

Both women were sentenced to four consecutive one to 15 year sentences, which will be capped at the 30-year max in Utah.

Feb. 20, 2024: Ruby Apologizes

The parent vlogger apologized during her sentencing to her six kids and estranged husband.

"For the past four years, I've chosen to follow counsel and guidance that has led me into a dark delusion," she said in court. "My distorted version of reality went largely unchecked as I would isolate from anyone who challenged me."

She continued, "To my babies, you are a part of me. I believed dark was light and right was wrong. I would do anything in this world for you. I took from you all that was soft, and safe, and good."

March 25, 2024: Ruby's Diary Revealed

Prosecutors released her chilling journal entries, in which she wrote about her mistreatment of her children, including her "Satanic" tween son.

"He slithers & sneaks around looking for opportunities when no one is watching & then he scurries," she wrote in an entry from July 10, 2023, which was her son's 12th birthday. "If he wants to emulate the savior, he needs to be 100% obedient with exactness. No wavering, no hiding."

She wrote about punishing her children by beating them and withholding food and water.

March 25, 2024: Kevin's Interview With Authorities Becomes Public

Prosecutors released audio footage of Kevin talking with investigators after Ruby was arrested, in which he spoke about alleged restrictions he faced in their house.

"There were all these rules now placed on me, like I can leave when I want but I couldn't come back until Ruby gave me permission," Kevin said in an audio clip obtained by E!. "I couldn't come into the kitchen to eat until Ruby gave me permission and the upstairs where Jodi was was completely offline. I couldn't go upstairs anymore in my own house. And Ruby would dictate all of the terms of how our interactions would be, when we would talk. And that was hard."

For the latest breaking news updates, click here to download the E! News App