Babysitter who returned dead two-month-old boy to mother 'pretending he was alive' charged with murder

Mother tried to revive her son after realising he was not breathing and his lips were blue

Adam Forrest
Sunday 06 January 2019 22:43 GMT
Parents who hired Marissa Tietsort as a babysitter talk about abuse their children suffered

A Wisconsin babysitter who allegedly killed a 2-month-old boy then pretended he was alive when she gave the boy back to his mother has been charged with first-degree homicide.

The 28-year-old woman Marissa Tietsort of Wausau caused the infant’s death in October, according to a criminal complaint filed by prosecutors on Friday.

Marathon County District Attorney’s office claims the babysitter pulled a hat over the boy’s eyes, put him in a snowsuit and car seat and returned him to his mother – without telling her the child was dead.

Police later found the mother trying to revive her son, but he had died hours earlier of blunt force head injuries from multiple impacts to the head.

Judge Jill Falstad issued a $500,000 (£390,000) cash bond for Ms Tietsort and ordered that she have no contact with children or with the victim’s family at Friday’s court hearing, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

Ms Tietsort, who is pregnant with her sixth child, also faces separate child abuse charges involving an 11-month-old girl in her care. The charges stems from an incident in August. She was arrested in that case after the two-month-old boy died in October.

According to the criminal complaint, the mother of the two-month-old boy dropped him and his older brother off at the babysitter’s home on 18 October.

About two hours later the baby’s mother received a text from Ms Tietsort, in which she said a local news website had published a story saying she had been charged with child abuse and she was not supposed to have contact with children.

Ms Tietsort told the mother not to tell anyone she was watching her two sons.

When the victim’s mother came to pick up both her sons later, the infant was in his car seat with a hat pulled down over his eyes. The mother told police she thought he was sleeping.

The boy’s mother later realised her son was not breathing, cold and stiff. Officers arrived to find the boy had “ashen skin tone, his jaw was clenched and his lips were blue.”

Ms Tietsort told police she did not kill the baby, but knew he was dead, according to details revealed the complaint.

When her boyfriend got home that evening, they went to a branch of McDonald’s and she brought the dead baby with them. They ate there for 15 minutes.

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After giving the boy back to his mother, Ms Tietsort, her boyfriend and their son went swimming at a local hotel.

A forensic pathologist autopsy determined the boy had died from three separate blunt force injuries to the head, the complaint stated.

It is unclear whether the accused woman has yet entered a plea to the murder charge.

Additional reporting by Associated Press

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