WAUKESHA — Carl A. Bookout was accused of first-degree reckless homicide of his 6-year-old stepson Tuesday. The child, who was non-verbal and autistic, was declared brain dead on July 20 stemming from blunt force trauma to the head that occurred three days prior on July 17.
The 42-year-old said the child was under his supervision the morning of July 17 when "he fell down six to eight carpeted steps" in their Waukesha apartment complex. The boy went to bed and slept for three hours, according to Bookout. When both parents attempted to wake him, he was unresponsive and had vomited in his bed. Neither Bookout nor the boy's mother attempted to seek medical assistance for about three to four hours after the alleged fall, according to the criminal complaint.
The boy was taken to Waukesha Memorial Hospital and then transported to Children's Hospital of Wisconsin with bruising to the forehead, bruising to his left eye, a severe skull fracture to the back of the head, bleeding on the brain, bruising to both ears and blood near his right eardrum. Medical staff indicated the injuries were not consistent with falling down the stairs and advised the 6-year-old would "die from his injuries."
He spent his sixth birthday in the hospital.
An autopsy of the child was conducted July 22. It was determined the cause of injuries would likely have been from a direct blow to his skull, a slam against a concrete wall or the force of being involved in a car crash.
The child had been seen by medical staff for a broken arm and swelling of his face on two different occasions in June.
Bookout faces two other charges including one count of repeated physical abuse of a child and a repeated offense of failing to provide information as a sex offender.
His bail has been set at $500,000, and he could face up to 60 years in prison for the homicide charge.
His preliminary hearing is Friday.