A Georgia woman was sentenced to 190 years in prison after she was found guilty of forcing her adopted daughter into a chicken coop and an outhouse, tying her by the neck to a tree and shocking her with electronic dog collars.
Diana Franklin was convicted last month of 19 counts of first-degree cruelty to children, eight counts of false imprisonment and one count of aggravated assault for actions that she reportedly called during her sentencing a sharing of “wisdom,” for which her adopted daughter was ungrateful.
The Macon woman said she and her husband “chose to share the wisdom, knowledge, resources, and most importantly our love to a child, young adult, who has in turn showed ungratefulness and hatred for the very life they have been given,” The Ledger-Enquirer reported.
Franklin was accused of imprisoning her daughter without food, and sometimes without clothing, in a chicken coop and an outhouse, beating the naked girl with a belt buckle, tying her like a dog by the neck to a tree and shocking her with remote-controlled electric collars meant for dog training.
Franklin, a Civil War re-enactor who served in the Air Force, also allegedly referred to the girl in her journals as her “slave.”
But the woman reportedly showed no remorse as she was sentenced on Tuesday, defending her disciplinary actions by comparing the methods to policies inmates are expected to follow in the county jail.
“Orders or instructions given to you by jail officers—parents—are official orders and must be obeyed promptly,” she said. “Rules must be obeyed regardless how unjust they are thought to be… This is a prime example of a healthy parent-child relationship.”
“It’s utterly absurd what she just said to this court. I’m really taken aback. That was just unbelievable,” Assistant District Attorney Wayne Jernigan reportedly said.
The Franklins took in the girl as a foster child in 2006 and then adopted her in 2007 when she was 10 years old.
She testified that she was tortured until social workers investigating an anonymous tip rescued her in 2012 after Franklin had padlocked her in a garage, the paper wrote.
She said in court on Tuesday that she can still smell and hear the chickens with which she was confined, one of the many facets of the posttraumatic stress disorder she suffers from.
Despite this, she testified that she forgave her former adoptive mother.
“I don’t hate you anymore, I forgive you for everything you’ve done… I forgive you and do not hate you, but you have to pay for what you did to me,” the victim, now 18, said, , The Ledger-Enquirer reported.
Superior Court Judge Bobby Peters reportedly told Franklin: “To me, you’re just an evil woman.”
The trial for Franklin's husband, Samuel Franklin, will be held at a later date.
He faces similar charges, as well as child molestation charges. It was not immediately clear if he had entered a plea.
An official from Taylor County told INSIDE EDITION Samuel Franklin has not yet eneted a plea.
He expected to go to court in 2016, as his attorney has requested a change of venue hearing, which will be held in the new year. Information for his lawyer was not immediately available.