State Takes 10 Children From ‘Off Grid’ Couple Living ‘In Squalor’ (VIDEO)


The Naugler family of Hardinsburg, Kentucky, lives what can be described as an “unconventional” lifestyle. Joe and Nicole Naugler call their way of life “off the grid,” but the state of Kentucky calls it squalor. A little over a week ago, the state took custody of the Naugler’s 10 children, after receiving a tip that the Nauglers’ “home” had no running water or septic.

While the Nauglers maintain that they live “off the grid,” they do remain connected via FacebookIn fact, it may be some of their Facebook posts, such as the one below, that will make it more difficult for them to get their children back.

A photo posted by the Naugler family shows some of their living conditions.

via Facebook

The Nauglers maintain that the state has previously inspected their property, and found it acceptable for them and their children. On May 11, Joe Naugler posted the following on their Facebook page:

We have allowed CHFS to inspect our property and interview our children multiple times. After every visit they have confirmed, and confirmed again today that our children are happy, healthy and well cared for and that our property is sufficient for their needs.

But the case is far more than just  family wanting to live a simple lifestyle, with a “nanny state” that is trying to tell them what to do. Joe Naugler’s oldest son, Alex Brow, who hasn’t been in his father’s custody since he was about three, says that he was physically and sexually abused as a child. Naugler also offers his take on that in his post.

Alex, my 19-year-old estranged son, testified in today’s hearing. We are both heartbroken with the way Alex’s upbringing away from us and his strained relationship with his mother have affected him. Although we are sad our children will not be returned to us today, we have nothing to hide. We have cooperated with all requests made to us by CHFS and will continue to do so.

The Daily Beast reports that Kentucky has the sixth highest rate of child abuse referrals in the country. In 2013 alone, Kentucky officials found over 20,000 children who were the victims of abuse or neglect. The state’s rate of 19.7 child abuse victims per 1,000 children in 2013 was the worst in the country. Yet, despite those numbers, only one in five victims was placed in foster care; a low rate compared to other states.

Is this a case of a state going overboard, meddling in the affairs of a family that chooses to live differently from most? Or is it a case of a state rightfully stepping in to protect the welfare of children who are being raised without the necessities of modern life?

Here’s a report on the Nauglers and their lifestyle, via “The Today Show”:


Featured image via Facebook

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19 Comments

  • Sunwyn Ravenwood says:

    This story (written, not video) leaves out the fact that their oldest son, age 19, is suing them for abuse. Children need to learn how to function in a world that includes people OUTSIDE their family. It is cruel to bring them up ignorant.

  • Bruce says:

    As more and more families are becoming homeless, is the government going to take away all the children?

    • Batman in Arkham says:

      This isn’t a “homeless” family in the traditional sense. This is a family that chooses to live outside of society, and it’s looking more like they do so in order to abuse their kids in peace.

      When 7 of your 10 kids have food poisoning, it’s not their fault for eating bad food. It’s your fault for FEEDING IT TO THEM (AND NOT HAVING A F–ING FRIDGE TO KEEP IT FRESH IN) instead of throwing it out.

      • Lithe Lassie says:

        NOPE, they didn’t really choose it, they were indigent and had gotten kicked out of various rental properties and moved states twice. They have a long list of creditors as well. Their GoFundMe raised quick $$, too quick given the speed of it after they alerted the media that their kids were “kidnapped” due to “off-grid ” lifestyle. My rear end! These are grifters who could not provide for their children and look to everyone else to support them. It’s been going on for years.

  • coloradomama says:

    The story doesn’t mention the fact that the couple were both arrested for a variety of charges including threats, resisting arrest and obstruction. The police were there because they were stealing water from a neighbor and got caught and threatened to shoot the neighbor they were stealing from. This isn’t about living “off the grid” it’s about living under the radar so CPS doesn’t find out how endangered their children really are. These children shouldn’t have to live this way, it is inhumane and unsafe, the parents should never get them back.

  • Ashley says:

    These children look healthy and happy to me. People need to mind their own business when there is no actual abuse being done. Living in nature, loving animals, sleeping outside?
    You’re sick if this equals abuse to you.

    • Sunwyn Ravenwood says:

      That’s fine if they never grow up, never leave home, never need to get a job, and marry each other. Because without an education they will never be able to get a job or go to college or join the military or support a family. Who would want to marry an unemployable uneducated hillbilly who does not know what indoor plumbing is or how to use anything electrical or electronic?

    • Batman in Arkham says:

      7 out of 10 kids being sick with food poisoning because the parents opt not to have a refrigerator is certainly abuse. Especially when they go on to blame the children for being sick on the food they provided.

    • S Davis says:

      Its called cause and effect , eventually there cause will effect the taxpayers in this state who will eventually have to take care of these 12 Children (parents included). you don’t live in a vacuum in this life…

  • GHY1 says:

    don’t conservatives want us to live off grid and be independent

    • S Davis says:

      This is not the rugged individualism that the conservatives preach this is just crazy parents forcing there kids to embrace this foolishness, and parents too lazy to go out and get a job…..

  • Batman in Arkham says:

    Teaching your children that it’s okay to steal from others is, in fact, part and parcel of abuse (especially when they threatened the neighbors they stole from after being caught). It’s encouraging and normalizing anri-social behavior.

    Considering this family’s track record, I’m not inclined to believe the “haven’t been sick in 7 years” nonsense. And when all but three of your kids have food poisoning because you fed them spoiled food because you reject modern technology that keeps food safe to eat, yes, that is abuse. Obviously the court didn’t think that was a stretch at all. And considering how hard it is to get CPS to do their job when it comes to white families, that speaks for itself.

    I’ll ignore the ad hominem abouit me watching Fox News (lol, the only time I watch Fox News is when Jon Stewart or Jon Oliver are ripping them apart), and assume you threw that in because you know your argument is insane.

  • S Davis says:

    When parents are stealing food supplies in order to take care of your kids it is a form of abuse because your teaching your kids to stealing is OK the end justify the means, instead of going out and getting a job and working for your keep, and teaching you kids a good work ethic…This State has enough negative stereotypical press they don’t need anymore….

  • S Davis says:

    Ashley we are watching the beginnings a train wreck, and the casualty will be the 10 kids. I am not for Government interference, but I have a bad feeling about this…

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