Watch CBSN Live

Pennsylvania mom: I didn't know son had died until the smell set in

HARRISBURG, Pa. - The mother of an 8-year-old Pennsylvania boy whose decomposing body was found on the third floor of their home said Saturday she didn't know he had died until noticing the smell.

Kimberly Tutko said her husband was the primary caretaker of their mentally disabled son, CBS affiliate WHP-TV in Harrisburg.

"I'm being picked on for being a bad mom: 'Oh you didn't know that something was wrong with him?' I didn't, because every single day, it was a normal routine," said Kimberly.

WHP-TV reports Kimberly agreed to be interviewed only if they did not show her face.

The couple's son was mentally handicapped and autistic, according to Kimberly, and the "normal routine" was for his dad, Jarrod Tutko, 38, to take care of him.

Harrisburg police said in a statement that Jarrod waited several days to tell her the boy had died, informing his wife about the death of their son, Jarrod Tutko Jr., "when the odor of decomposition became too strong."

Police were called to the home Friday and found the boy's body.

Police charged Jarrod Tutko on Saturday with child endangerment, concealing the death of a child and abuse of a corpse. Court records do not list an attorney for him.

It's not clear how the boy died. An autopsy is scheduled for next week.

The couple's five other children were placed in protective custody.

"He carried him into the bathroom, he put him down on the floor and he said to me, 'Junior passed away,'" Kimberly told WHP, adding: "He didn't kill him, he found him dead."

She told that her son's disability often made him difficult to control. He would rip up the flooring and carpeting of his bedroom, smear his feces on the floor and walls, and refuse to wear a diaper, she said.

He lived on the third floor and was primarily cared for by his father, while she looked after another disabled child who requires round-the-clock care and stays on the second floor, she said.

"My daughter relies on me," Kimberly Tutko said. "I take care of her and my husband takes care of Jarrod Jr."

Kimberly Tutko said her husband told her their son died Tuesday.

"I said to him 'Why didn't you say anything?'" she said. "He said he was too afraid to say anything because of other kids in the house."

Kimberly said Jarrod was a good father.

"I was scared of him. But I know deep down inside, he would not hurt any of those kids," said Kimberly, telling WHP-TV that her husband had hit her in the past.