Pennsylvania Parents Charged with Homicide in Starvation Death of 9-Year-Old Son

Pennsylvania Parents Charged with Homicide in Starvation Death of 9-Year-Old Son
Kimberly and Jarrod Tutko
Harrisburg Police Department/AP (2)

10/01/2014 AT 07:35 PM EDT

When 9-year-old Jarrod Tutko Jr.'s body was discovered on Aug. 1 in his Harrisburg, Pennsylvania home, he weighed just 16 pounds.

The child's parents, Jarrod Tutko Sr. and Kimberly Tutko, have been charged with criminal homicide, according to court documents obtained by WPMT.

"He was dehydrated, malnourished," Dauphin County District Attorney Ed Marsico said during a press conference on Monday, according to the TV station. "There was dried, caked fecal matter on the bottom of the child's feet and his hands and fingers nails also had fecal matter on them."

Initially, just the boy's father was arrested after his mother alerted the authorities, according to police. Court documents state the boy's corpse decomposed inside their house for nearly a week before the cops were called.

Cops say Tutko Sr. was aware of his son's death, but he only told his wife once the smell had become too terrible to bear. It was then she dialed 911.

Kimberly told the cops that she had not seen her son in many years, though she later confessed to seeing him "a day or two prior to his death," reports WPMT.

But the horror doesn't stop there. According to court documents, the Tutkos had a history of child neglect.

One criminal complaint against Kimberly detailed in the documents dated back to 1993 and involved a daughter from a previous relationship who had sustained two head injuries in her care. Her parental rights to that child were terminated years ago.

In addition, the documents reveal that Tutko Jr. spent time in and out of foster care from birth, thanks to complaints against his parents.

In 2005, while the family was living in New Jersey, a nurse was placed with the family because the boy had "a history of losing weight and developmental delays," the documents read.

A doctor eventually told Tutko Sr. to take his son to the hospital and the father "said, 'No' and hung up the phone," according to the documents.

It was then the New Jersey Department of Youth and Family Services stepped in, the papers state. Tutko Jr. was placed in foster care for nine months before being returned to his parents, who had moved to Pennsylvania during that time.

But according to the court documents, the boy was not checked up on again until October 2013, after a report to the state's child abuse hotline.

During that visit, one of Tutko Jr.'s siblings told the caseworker that, " 'Dad doesn't care about Jarrod Junior anymore,' " the documents state.

Tutko Sr. has also been charged with child endangerment, concealing the death of a child and abusing a corpse, while Kimberly faces a child endangerment charge as well, according to police.

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