Christian homeschooler mom found guilty on 28 counts of child abuse

Georgia mother Diana Franklin, who used her staunchly held religious beliefs to justify abusing her adopted teenaged daughter, could face over 400 years in prison after being found guilty on 28 counts of child abuse.

Georgia mother Diana Franklin, who used her staunchly held religious beliefs to justify abusing her adopted teenaged daughter, could face over 400 years in prison after being found guilty on 28 counts of child abuse.

On Monday November 23, Franklin was found guilty on 19 counts of cruelty to children, 8 counts of false imprisonment, and 1 count of aggravated assault. Her husband, Samuel Franklin, will stand trial in December, and is accused of sexually abusing their teenaged daughter.

As stated by court records, Franklin subjected her adopted daughter to starvation, a shock collar, and extended periods of confinement in a chicken coop. She believed that the bible justified these sadistic punishments. The teen testified in regards to the cruel abuse she suffered for six years at the hands of Diana and Samuel Franklin.

According to reports, Diana Franklin forced her adopted daughter to live in a hot shed without air conditioning and would imprison her there for weeks. Franklin was also accused of withholding food, forcing her to read and write Bible verses as punishment, forcing her to cut her hair, administering extended periods of confinement, and a number of other cruelties.

When concerned neighbors confronted the Franklins about their inhuman treatment, Diana Franklin replied that she was “doing what the Bible says” by punishing her daughter for not doing her chores the “right way.”

Screen Shot 2015-11-24 at 1.58.37 AM

Diana Franklin is led away (MS News)

The 15-year-old victim told police that her adoptive parents forced her to spend days locked inside a small outhouse and chicken coop while wearing a shock collar to punish her for not doing her schoolwork. According to other reports, the girl was also forced to live on bread and water for long periods of time.

During her testimony, the teen said she was locked in different outbuildings on the family’s property whenever she menstruated. She was only permitted to wear a shirt and not allowed any undergarments.

Defense attorney Kevin Bailey argued that Franklin was only raising her adopted daughter in the way dictated by her religious beliefs. However, the jury disagreed. This religious defense was unsuccessful and it took only two hours for Franklin to be convicted on all charges. She could be sentenced to over 400 years in prison and is expected to be sentenced the morning of December 8th.

[Patheos] Featured image via



  1. Avatar

    Michael Vinson

    November 24, 2015 at 4:53 am

    Hmm, religion, such wonderful superstitious nonsense.
    Typical non-personal accountability. “It’s not me. This is the bible, this is the word of god”.
    I’m surprised there wasn’t an insanity defense. That she could have won, because you have to be more than a little off your rocker to buy into the notion that anything the bible says has the slightest bit of credibility.

  2. Avatar

    Larry Brautigam

    November 24, 2015 at 7:25 am

    Jeebus is soooo proud.

    She loves the babble so much, give it to her – stone her.

  3. Avatar

    Simon Peters

    November 24, 2015 at 10:04 am

    Larry’s infantile comments add nothing to the discussion. It is a strange thing that the US seems to have such a large number of religious maniacs in its population.The worry is that they might number enough to get another one, Ben Carson, elected President. Be afraid America, be very afraid!

  4. Avatar


    November 24, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    Never trust a person who can clear their conscience of any immoral act by asking for forgiveness from their imaginary friend (God).

  5. Avatar

    Jack Dick Tator (@jackdicktator)

    November 24, 2015 at 11:19 pm

    I’ve read the Bible many a time, I do not recall any thing about chicken coops and shock collars, let alone “doing the chores right!”.

  6. Avatar

    Jeff Lippman

    November 26, 2015 at 2:15 am

    Yet more proof that home schooling needs to be be reexamined and regulated. No child should be abused, I’m sure all sane people can agree on that. Therefore, in the interest of protecting children, all home schooled children should be subject to annual inspection, to ensure three things:
    One, the full curriculum is being provided.
    Two, at least minimum standards of the curriculum are being met.
    Three, abusive practices are not being perpetrated against the children.
    Any civilized society that allows home schooling but fails to ensure the above three requirements, is failing it’s children and by extension, it’s own future.

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    January 1, 2016 at 2:07 pm

    My mom punched me in the nose because she thought I back talked is that child abuse?

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