By Sean Dooley, Gail Deutsch and Alexa Valiente
Apr 7, 2016 11:43 AM ET
WATCH Missing Teen Girls Lived With Couple in Public for Almost 3 Years
Living in Lakeville, Minnesota, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and David Rucki appeared to be doting and loving parents to their five children, Nico, Samantha, Gianna, Nia and Gino.
But despite the happy moments their home videos captured, Sandra said she suffered years of emotional and physical abuse at David’s hand. She also claims he abused the children.
“We’d lock ourselves in the bedroom because we’re scared. We just didn’t know how his behavior was going to be from one day to the next,” Sandra, 50, told ABC News’ “20/20.”
Watch the full story on ABC News’ “20/20” on Friday, April 8 at 10 p.m. ET.
By 2011, Sandra said she had enough and filed for divorce. But what ensued was a bitter he-said, she-said dispute with their five children at the center.
Two years later, a court-appointed psychologist determined that Sandra had been engaging in parental alienation, manipulating her children into fearing their father. Custody of the five children was temporarily transferred from Sandra to a relative. However, the two oldest daughters, Samantha, now 17, and Gianna, now 16, who were often vocal about their claim that their father was abusive, ran away and disappeared. The sisters were eventually found in 2015.