Krista Hudson, 31, tried to hide her face during much of Wednesday's arraignment. She is charged with 42 counts-- most relating to the abuse of her two children. Prosecutors say it went on for years.
"There is a period of four years recounted in the affidavit. The statute of limitations-- meaning how long we can prosecute-- is only three years," Windsor County Deputy State's Attorney David Cahill said.
The alleged abuse happened at the Hudsons' home in Ludlow. According to police, the mom would repeatedly beat the kids as punishment. And court papers state when the kids weren't getting hit, they were forced to stay in their rooms, only allowed out for meals, school and chores.
"The affidavit of probable cause sets forth multiple mechanisms by which the victim was hit, but the common thread was that it was always some form of hitting," Cahill said.
Richard Hudson, 48, Krista's husband, is charged with cruelty to children, specifically failing to protect them from abuse. Both pleaded not guilty Wednesday.
But it's alleged abuse of vulnerable adults that started the investigation. Police say the couple financially exploited, and in two cases assaulted people they lured to their Ludlow home with the promise of providing care. It was from that investigation and concern from several community officials that DCF began an investigation of their own.
"Any case involving children, the Department of Children and Families has a roll in insuring that those children are in a safe environment consistent with the rearing of a child," Cahill said.
Wednesday's charges are part of an ongoing investigation and investigators in Ludlow say additional charges are coming.
The kids are currently in state custody. Family members of one of the victims were in court but declined to speak about the case.
Saturday, May 25 2013 8:16 PM EDT2013-05-26 00:16:13 GMT
A burglary at the Dorset Union Store. Police say the Church Street business, in Dorset, was broken into sometime late Friday night or early Saturday morning. At this time, we do not know what was stolen.More >>
Police search for a suspect that left his blood at the crime scene.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 8:13 PM EDT2013-05-26 00:13:06 GMT
Governor Peter Shumlin is urging Vermonters to be vigilant as the rain continues to come down. Especially, he says, with the possibility of wet snow that could bring down trees and damage property. ShumlinMore >>
Governor Peter Shumlin is urging Vermonters to stay safe as the rain continues to come down.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 8:09 PM EDT2013-05-26 00:09:12 GMT
First responders scrambled to drain a private dam Saturday afternoon to avert major damage. Officials say the dam on Poker Hill road in Underhill nearly burst Saturday afternoon. Members of the localMore >>
First responders scrambled to drain a private dam Saturday afternoon to avert major damage.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 7:58 PM EDT2013-05-25 23:58:16 GMT
Rain-battered state roads in the hardest hit areas of Underhill and Jericho are re-open to traffic, but that doesn't mean the work is done for crews. "It's been a very challenging two-day event here soMore >>
As the rain continues to pour down, response crews are not getting a break.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 7:51 PM EDT2013-05-25 23:51:37 GMT
Driving along Route 15, you may notice some roads have reopened as crews guide drivers cautiously around the cracked gravel. But driving down roads like North Underhill Station, you won't get very far. ConnerMore >>
While needed repairs are being made, more work is ahead.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:30 PM EDT2013-05-25 03:30:10 GMT
A hole in the road closed one of the routes into Canada Friday.State Police say Route 5 in Derby Line is closed near Caswell Avenue because of a hole in the pavement just a couple of feet over the lineMore >>
A hole in the road closed one of the routes into Canada Friday.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 7:17 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:17:06 GMT
It was a storm that left residents with more damage than they could have ever imagined. "The basement has about 13 inches of water," said Bob Genter of Underhill. And preparing for the aftermath of theMore >>
Flash floods left destruction across the region. And the rain is not over. Heavy downpours left some people trapped in their neighborhoods as emergency crews work to try to clear the roads.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 7:54 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:54:18 GMT
Vermont State Police say the following roads have been closed due to flooding:UNDERHILL: VERMONT ROUTE 15, CILLEYHILL POKER HILL ROAD NORTH UNDERHILL STATION ROAD PAIGE ROAD DAUDLIN ROAD BROWNS TRACE,More >>