A father and his daughter were arrested after the decomposing bodies of three newborn babies were discovered in a basement hidden inside their “house of horrors.”
Police made the gruesome discovery at the home of Piotr Gierasik, 54, and his daughter Paulina Gierasik, 20, who had allegedly been in an incestuous relationship for years.
The couple lived in the small town of Czerniki in northern Poland, where locals told media they often saw the father and daughter walking “hand in hand.”
Authorities raided his home on September 15 and found three bodies of newborn babies in his basement, wrapped in black plastic and in various states of decomposition.
Unconfirmed reports say one of the bodies wrapped in a black plastic garbage bag was approximately three weeks old at the time of her death.
Police made the gruesome discovery at the home of Piotr Gierasik, 54, and his daughter Paulina Gierasik, 20.
Police had to navigate a damp, unstable corridor of crumbling bricks before descending into the horror-filled pit where the bodies were found.
Piotr and Paulina now face life in prison if convicted of murder and incest.
Colleagues who worked with the young woman in a pastry shop in a neighboring town told reporters that her father “shaved her head so other children wouldn’t look at her” and that she admired him “as if he were God.”
Prosecutor Mariusz Duszyński told a Polish media outlet. made that the father had been accused of three counts of murder, one count of incest with Paulina and one of incest with another daughter, while Paulina was accused of incest and two counts of murder.
While two of the babies were Paulina’s, the mother of the third murdered baby was one of her sisters.
It is believed that Piotr was the father of the three newborns, PolsatNews reported.
It was with the help of Paulina’s colleagues that police pressed charges, and a co-worker reportedly alerted social services after seeing a “disturbing” text message on the young woman’s phone.
“We all assumed she was pregnant, I think she had tied some belts like a kind of corset,” the worker told the super express newspaper.
“When he returned early from his vacation, the change was visible. She was much thinner, weaker and constantly tired.
“When we asked her about the child, she feigned surprise and denied it.”
Her colleagues also noticed that Paulina’s father always dropped her off and picked her up from work, and that she always called him by his name.
Piotr and Paulina now face life in prison if convicted of murder and incest. Adam Warzawa/EPA/AAP
When she returned to work without her pregnant belly, her colleagues claim to have seen vicious messages between her and her father talking about the child, who was still alive at the time.
They notified the authorities, but unfortunately not in time to save the baby’s life.
While some in town say they were suspicious of the couple, others were surprised when news of the arrests came to light.
“The father was left alone with the children,” said a local super express newspaper.
“There are many, ten or twelve, the older ones have already left.
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“Piotr made a good impression. The yard is neglected, but he installed new windows in the house.
“There were no signs he was drinking. She took the children for walks or to the forest to pick mushrooms.
“Just ordinary people. Who would have thought that such abominations existed in their home?
Katarzyna Matyszczak, manager of the store where Paulina worked, said everyone in the store was “gossiping about it.”
“His youngest daughter Paulina is a beautiful girl. Everyone said she was pregnant. So I asked him directly about it,” she explained.
“She denied it. One of her friends didn’t believe it.
“I won’t say who, but it was she who reported the whole matter to the relevant services, because she suspected that she had given birth to a child.”
Prosecutors are now awaiting an autopsy to determine how the three babies died.
Meanwhile, police continue to search the property to see if there are more bodies hidden in the house.
The father and daughter are in custody while the investigation continues.
They face life in prison if convicted.
Incest perpetrated by parents of either sex against children of either sex is considered a form of child abuse.
It is often difficult for children to speak out against their parents in this situation, due to the controlling and fear-based nature of their relationship.
It can also become “normalized” in the mind of the abused child, as that is often what they have always known.