– Rep. Natalie Mihalek (R-Allegheny/Washington) and Washington County District Attorney Jason Walsh today held a press conference at the Washington County Courthouse to introduce legislation that would elevate the crime of concealing the death of a child to a second-degree felony.
The bill was borne out of a horrific crime that occurred in Charleroi, Washington County. Alan Hollis and Kylie Wilt are charged with concealing the death of their 5-month-old son, Archer, by placing his body in a wall inside their home, then drywalling over the wall to hide the corpse. Investigators found the child in November of 2021 during a wellness check. When Walsh filed charges, he was shocked to learn that this egregious conduct only supported misdemeanor charges for concealing the death of a child and abuse of a corpse.
“As the mother of three young children, I can’t wrap my head around the inhumane way this baby was treated, by his own parents nonetheless,” Mihalek said. “When our district attorney brought this case to my attention, I knew something had to be done so I began crafting legislation to appropriately punish such an offensive action. No child should have to endure what baby Archer did, and this is our way of honoring him by ensuring that the punishment fits the crime.”
"Our children are our most precious asset,” said Walsh. “I worked closely with Rep. Mihalek to craft this legislation that would increase the penalty of concealing the death of a child should it be signed into law. This would enhance the prosecutor’s ability to punish those that commit such acts and hopefully deter these acts from happening in the first place.”
Mihalek hope that House Bill 2276
will be considered by the House Judiciary Committee.
Representative Natalie Mihalek
40th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives