Hartford PD: Autistic teen suffered multiple cuts and bruises prior to death

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Matthew Tirado's mother, Katiria Tirado,

HARTFORD —  A mother is facing criminal charges after her severely autistic son died one day prior, police said.

On February 14, around 2:53 a.m., Hartford Public Safety Dispatch Center received a call from a mother demanding medical help for her son who was vomiting and had gall stones, police said.

Officers said paramedics arrived to the scene at 519 Park Street and transported Matthew Tirado, 17, to Hartford Hospital. Paramedics said Tirado was pronounced dead at 5:15 a.m. where he was then taken to the Connecticut Office of Chief Medical Examiner.

Hartford Police said they were not notified of this incident at this time.

Officer said it wasn’t until 12:30 p.m., when they had received a call from the OCME regarding a severely autistic male teen who had signs of significant and suspicious body trauma and what appeared to be a severe case of malnutrition. Police said they then were dispatched to the OCME where they observed multiple cuts and bruises on Tirado’s face, torso and arms. Officers said the victim weighed approximately 88 pounds.

Police said they have conducted an immediate investigation and are approaching this as a “possible homicide”. Officers said a search warrant was provided and an immediate search of the victim’s apartment was executed.

The victim’s mother, Katiria Vanessa Tirado, 33, was located on Bannister Street. Police said Katiria’s nine-year-old daughter appeared to be in good health and was taken to Connecticut’s Children’s Medical Center for medical and physical evaluation. The daughter will remain in DCF custody pending a follow-up investigation, Police said.

On February 15, Police said based on the investigation, they had obtained an arrest warrant on Katiria. She is charged with one felony count of cruelty to persons and is being held on a $200,000 bond. Officer said based on the analysis and pending autopsy results, the charges to Katiria could be changed. She is set to appear in court on February 16.

Police said they are working with the Special Investigations Division, Department of Children & Families and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for this investigation.