BY KATHY CHANG
NEW BRUNSWICK — Defense attorney Gerald Krovatin said he is extremely disappointed with the guilty verdict against his client Michelle Lodzinski, who stood trial in Middlesex County Superior Court for murdering her five-year-old son in 1991.
He said he and Lodzinski will be explore all of the alternatives available to her.
Lodzinski, 48, formerly of South Amboy, killed her five-year-old son Timothy “Timmy” Wiltsey in 1991 and dumped his body in a creek off of Olympic Drive in Raritan Center in Edison, a jury panel of seven men and five women concluded on May 18 after a three-month trial.
Lodzinski bowed her head and appeared to shake as the verdict of first degree murder was read before state Superior Court Judge Dennis Nieves.
The jury started deliberations on May 12; however, the jury foreman was dismissed for personal reasons on May 17. An alternate juror was selected and the jury started new deliberations the morning of May 18.
The jury came to its decision almost 25 years to the day Timmy was reported missing over Memorial Day weekend in 1991.
After the verdict, Assistant Prosecutors Christie Bevacqua and Scott LaMountain were met with hugs and “congratulations.” Some former law enforcement officers who worked the case in 1991 and 1992 were present.
The Sayreville Police Department posted “Lodzinski Verdict, Guilty of Murder” on its Facebook page along with a photo of Timmy’s school picture that was circulated in the days, weeks and months after the young boy was reported missing in 1991; there were nearly 1,000 “likes” and numerous comments posted almost immediately.
“I think what was right was done today,” said Michelle’s younger brother Michael Lodzinski, of Michigan. “She’s the only one that knows what happened [to Timmy] and she’s never told us anything.”
Michael Lodzinski sat through some of the trial, saying he was shocked by the verdict; however, he said Timmy did get justice by the verdict and the family has never forgotten him.
“I do love [my sister] very much and I do want the best for her, but I also want what is right for Timmy,” he said, noting that he had his suspicions about what happened to Timmy after the 1994 incident when Lodzinski told police she was abducted by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents outside her apartment in Colonia and taken to Detroit.
Lodzinski, who was 26 years old at the time, later admitted faking her own abduction and was sentenced to probation. The jury did not hear about the incident during the trial.
Michael Lodzinski said whatever opinions he had of what happened to Timmy he put aside over the years for the sake of his relationship with his nephews, who are Michelle Lodzinski’s two other sons.
“She has been a great mother to her other two boys, there’s no doubt about it. … I mean I feel for those two boys, they’re not going to see their mother anymore,” he said.
Gerald Krovatin, who represents Lodzinski, has said his client loved Timmy and was a good mother to him. He called the state’s case against his client circumstantial with no evidence.
Timmy was reported missing the night of May 25, 1991 at a carnival held at Kennedy Park in Sayreville. A massive search for him ensued after Lodzinski told authorities she had only turned her back on Timmy for a few minutes to get a soda at a concession stand when he disappeared.
In the days and weeks after Timmy was reported missing, Lodzinski told law enforcement officials at least four different versions of what had happened at the carnival.
Through testimony, law enforcement officials investigating the case in 1991 and 1992 have said Lodzinski was their primary suspect in Timmy’s disappearance.
The state’s position has been Lodzinski attended the carnival herself that night, killed Timmy, and dumped his body in the creek off Olympic Drive in Raritan Center where she had previously worked four-tenths of a mile from, because he became a burden preventing her from keeping a steady job and relationship.
Timmy’s skeletal remains were found in the creek off Olympic Drive on April 23, 1992.
In 2014, Lodzinski was charged that she “did knowingly or willfully” murder Timmy after the case was reopened by the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office in 2011. The identification of a blanket that was found near Timmy’s remains by people who babysat Timmy led to Lodzinski’s indictment by a Middlesex County grand jury, followed by her arrest where she lived in Port St. Lucie, Florida, and extradition to New Jersey.
Lodzinski faces life in prison. Her sentencing is scheduled for August 23.