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Wausau baby sitter to face homicide charge in baby’s death

in Breaking News/Sirens
By Shereen Siewert

WAUSAU — A prosecutor in central Wisconsin says a Wausau baby sitter will be charged with killing a two-month-old boy in her care.

Twenty-eight-year-old Marissa Tietsort, who is pregnant with her sixth child, is already facing child abuse charges involving another baby for whom she was caring.

Assistant District Attorney Molly Lawrence said Thursday during a hearing in Marathon County Circuit Court that Tietsort will be charged Friday with first-degree intentional homicide. Tietsort has been in jail on a $250,000 cash bond since she was charged in October with child abuse for injuring an 11-month-old girl. That case was already pending when a Wausau mother reported her infant son unresponsive in his child seat shortly after picking him up from Tietsort’s home.

Tietsort has twice requested her bond be lowered, claiming that she’s not getting sufficient prenatal care in jail. In a letter to a judge, Tietsort says she’s a great mom and not a threat to society or a monster.

Court filings show Tietsort had four of her own children removed from her care and is linked to at least two prior reports of suspected child abuse, one of which involved a 3-month-old girl who suffered a fractured skull. Tietsort and her boyfriend both denied harming the child but later refused to answer phone calls from detectives, according to the police report. Official charges were never filed.

In addition, a child abuse restraining order was filed against Tietsort in 2010 after allegations surfaced that she left her own child in a hot car on multiple occasions and stole prescription drugs from a friend.

Tietsort faces life in prison if she is convicted on the first-degree intentional homicide charge.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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