Transcript for Popular YouTube mom arrested
investigation involving a mother now under arrest tonight. She had seven adopted children, they were in a popular YouTube series. And tonight, prosecutors have charged that mom with abusing the children. Police say they were pepper sprayed, locked in a closet for days without day. Here's ABC's chief national correspondent Matt Gutman tonight. Reporter: Tonight, the police say the serial abuse those little actors suffered was a dark, behind the camera secret. Michelle Hopson adopted the children, but according to court documents, she'd beaten and pepper sprayed them when they failed to memorize their lines. Her fantastic adventures YouTube channel had over 800,000 subscribers. The on-camera scenarios chillingly similar to what police say was their reality. See? We're trapped! Reporter: Investigators tipped off after Hopson's adult biological daughter came forward. Her adopted children claiming they did not go to school and Hopson would pepper spray all over their face and body, spanking them, forcing them to take ice baths and when resisting, would force their heads under water. Children allegedly beaten with hangers and forced to stand in a corner, hands raised above their head for 18 hours straight. And while some of the videos focused on food, even cookies -- Cookies, cookies, cookies. Oh yeah, you hungry? Reporter: Police say the kids were starved for days at a time. Police accuse Hopson's two adult sons for failing to report the abuse, despite knowing about it. Hopson facing multiple charges including kidnapping. She has not entered a plea. Matt Gutman with us live tonight. And mat. If convicted of the most serious charges here, this accused mom could spend the rest of her life behind bars? Reporter: And that's because she faces 19 counts, including five for kidnapping. Now, she's possibly made millions off of this YouTube channel, but just minutes ago, YouTube terminated that channel, ensuring she can't monetize it going forward. David? Matt Gutman, thank you.
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