Welp, the DaddyOFive drama continues. It appears that two of the couple’s five children, founder Mike Martin’s biological children — Cody, 9, and Emma, 12 — have been removed from the Martin household and returned to the custody of their biological mother, Rose Hall.
The custody loss comes on the heels of allegations suggesting Mike and Heather Martin were verbally and physically abusing their children during “prank videos” that they would film, often with the help of the other children, and then upload to their YouTube channel, DaddyOFive.
Nine-year-old Cody seemed to bear the brunt of the allegedly abusive behavior. In many videos, which have since been deleted from the couple’s channel, viewers raised concern about the way in which Cody was treated, including being screamed and cursed at by both Mike and Heather and even physically harmed by both his father and step-brothers.
The couple released an apology video on April 22 in which they stated they were getting family counseling and offered the first sincere-ish apology for their actions, an apology that followed two prior videos in which they first called those who were concerned “haters” and threatened to block them and then claimed the pranks were all fake and that the children were in on everything.
According to The Daily Mail, the channel has 760,000 subscribers and would typically draw between $200 and $350 thousand in ad revenue annually for the couple.
Though the DaddyOFive couple did not receive widespread backlash for their videos until recently, the children’s biological mother, Rose Hall, says she reported them to CPS on October 17 of last year on suspicion of child abuse. The Martin County Sheriff’s Office in North Carolina confirmed that a complaint had been filed.
Additionally, Hall alleges that Mike and Heather Martin initially took custody of Cody and Emma illegally in 2014 after forging her signature on custody paperwork.
Since the DaddyOFive channel came under fire, many internet and YouTube personalities spoke out against the couple’s mistreatment of the children, most notably Mike Cruse of Papa Does Preach and popular YouTuber Philip DeFranco, the latter of whom the Martins directed a great deal of blame toward after their story broke several news outlets. An online petition was also established and accrued 19,000 signatures in an attempt to persuade CPS to investigate the Baltimore, Maryland family.
In addition to allegedly verbally and physically assaulting Cody in particular, the couple was also accused of mentally abusing him by threatening to sell his toys, smashing his X-box, and refusing to take him on the family Disney vacation.
Hall, the children’s biological mother, appeared on TV with her lawyer and stated both Cody and Emma are doing fine and are currently being “deprogrammed.”
Thank all things holy that someone is finally looking into this train wreck. The thought of those kids having to endure one more second of that horror show makes a great deal of us sicker than sick.