The mother of a boy found dead in an uptown Harrisburg home said her husband waited about four days to reveal to her that their son had died.
Kimberly Tutko said she noticed a strange odor coming from the third floor of her Green Street home Friday night.
Her husband, Jarrod Nicholas Tutko, went upstairs and came back with body of their eight-year-old son, Jarrod Jr., wrapped in a sheet and laid him on the bathroom floor, she said.
Believing the boy had just died, Kimberly Tutko said she pulled the sheet back and quickly realized he had been dead for several days.
Kimberly Tutko said her husband told her the child died on Tuesday.
“I said to him ‘Why didn’t you say anything?'” Kimberly Tutko said. “He said he was too afraid to say anything because of other kids in the house.”
Kimberly Tutko said she then called 911.
Jarrod Nicholas Tutko Sr., 38, was charged with endangering the welfare of children, concealing the death of a child and abuse of a corpse early Saturday morning, according to court records.
Jarrod Tutko’s bail was set at $500,000 at his preliminary arraignment Saturday morning and he is being held in Dauphin County Prison, according to court records. Kimberly Tutko has not been charged with a crime.
A news release from Harrisburg Police states Jarrod Tutko informed his wife about the boy’s death “when the odor of decomposition became too strong.”
Police have not said how Jarrod Jr. died. An autopsy is scheduled for next week.
Kimberly Tutko spoke with Pennlive on Saturday morning and allowed a photographer and reporter to tour the home along the 2100 block of Green Street on Saturday morning, about 12 hours after investigators had left the home. She did not want to be photographed.
She said she understands people will find it difficult to believe she did not know her son was dead.
She explained that her son was severely mentally disabled and was diagnosed with autism, failure to thrive and Fragile X Syndrome, a genetic defect, that causes intellectual disability, behavioral and learning challenges, according to the National Fragile X Foundation.
Jarrod Jr. was kept on the third floor of the home and was primarily cared for by his father, Kimberly Tutko said.
The couple has five other children, ages 13, 12, 10, 6 and 3, — several of whom suffer from serious medical conditions, including one who is deaf. They were removed from the home Friday night and are being cared for by the county children and youth specialists, police said.
Kimberly Tutko said one of the children, a daughter, requires care around the clock. The girl, she said, has autism and is in a vegetative state, has a feeding tube, is blind, has a collapsed lung and is confined to a hospital bed on the second floor of the home.
“My daughter relies on me,” Kimberly Tutko said. “I take care of her and my husband takes care of Jarrod Jr.”
Kimberly Tutko said Jarrod Jr. was often difficult to control. He would rip up the flooring and carpeting of his bedroom, smear his feces on the floor and walls, and refused to wear a diaper. He did not attend school because he was agitated by loud noises, she said.
The conditions of Jarrod Jr.’s bedroom were as Kimberly Tutko described them when Pennlive toured the home, including the presence of feces. The remainder of the home appeared to be in good condition and looked as though active children lived there.
Source: The Patriot News