DEARBORN COUNTY, Ind. - An Indiana couple who fostered nearly 40 children over the years was each sentenced to more than 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to abusing children.
Diane Combs, 56, pleaded guilty Tuesday to multiple felony counts, including aggravated battery, and was sentenced to 20 years in prison and then 12 years probation, according to Fox affiliate FOX 59.
Her husband, Timothy Combs, 60, pleaded guilty to three felony counts of battery earlier in September. He was sentenced to 18 years in prison with five of those years suspended to probation.
Last September, the Combs were arrested on suspicion of “horrific” child abuse, FOX 59 reported.
At the time of their arrest, they had eight children in their home: four foster kids, one adopted child and three whom they were babysitting.
A local prosecutor said the investigation into the foster couple started when a teenage foster child borrowed a friend’s phone to record the abuse. After viewing the video, the friend showed his mother and she reported it to authorities.
In the video, Diane appeared to slap a naked 6-year-old boy, hitting him so hard he fell on the ground. She then slapped the child again and forced him to put a dirty diaper in his mouth.
The foster children told investigators that anyone who wet the bed would have to put a dirty diaper in their mouth as a form of punishment, FOX 59 reported.
According to court documents, the children talked about “whoopings,” which involved the kids being dropped on their heads and suffering injuries to their “private parts,” according to FOX 59.
Since 2014, the Combs fostered 38 children.
This story was reported from Los Angeles.