A widower suspected of murdering three babies from an incestuous relationship with one daughter and the rape of another has now been accused of driving his wife to an early grave.
Piotr Gierasik, 54, is said to have carried out a campaign of abuse against his wife Hanna before her sudden death at the young age of 38 almost exactly 15 years ago.
His neighbours believe that the mother of 12 of his children may have died of ‘a broken heart’ after finding out that he was having sex with a daughter and being powerless to stop it.
Her premature death served only to ramp up his sickening abuse when he was left to bring up his children alone at the family’s isolated and run down home in the village of Czerniki, northern Poland.
He and his daughter Paulina Gierasik, 20, who is said to have been in a consensual relationship with him, face multiple charges of murder and incest and life imprisonment if convicted.
Piotr was allegedly in a sick incestous relationship with his daughter for four years
Paulina Gierasik, 20 (pictured), was arrested along with her father Piotr after the babies’ remains were discovered in shallow graves and wrapped in plastic bags at the property in the village of Czerniki
Neighbours believe that Hanna Gierasik, wife of Piotr, died at 38 after she learned of her husband’s abuse against their daughter
MailOnline can also reveal that villagers became suspicious around eight years ago that heavily-built and shaven-headed Piotr was having sex with an older daughter and reported him to police.
An inquiry was launched, but the girl denied that anything had happened, and he was cleared by a judge who allegedly told his accuser to apologise to him.
The awful truth about his incest house of horror finally emerged on Friday when police found the remains of two of his babies buried in his basement.
The remains of a third newborn baby, believed to have died several years ago and reportedly in an ‘advanced stage of decomposition’, were excavated from the same spot on Saturday.
Locals now fear there could be even more dead babies from another of Piotr’s daughters who may have been raped by him.
A villager has recalled how the young woman was pregnant with twins, and was taken out of the area to supposedly give birth, but nobody knew what had happened to the children.
One resident who asked not to be named told MailOnline how she was now convinced that jobless Piotr was responsible for his wife’s death.
The local said: ‘He used to shout and scream at her, even though she had her hands full looking after 12 children and being a loving mother.
Clothes drying outside of the home that Piotr and Hanna Gierasik once shared together in the tiny village of Czermiki
Piotr and Paulina Gierasik allegedly dumped all three of the incest-born children in their basement
Moving to the village around 15 years ago, Piotr was left to bring up his children after his wife died
A peek inside the house of horrors in Czerniki, Poland
‘He used to beat her up and we think he eventually finished her off. Now I am thinking that the last straw may have been her finding out he was having sex with her daughter.’
Another resident told Fakt newspaper that she was also convinced that Hanna found out about his sexual abuse and felt powerless to stop it.
The resident remembered Hanna’s death, saying: ‘She was never sick, but suddenly she lost weight, her hair fell out, she was hospitalised and never came out alive. Her death was never explained, I don’t believe she just died like that, she was only 38 years old.’
Hanna who died on September 18, 2008, is buried in a nearby cemetery, with a gravestone marking carrying her picture with the heart-moving inscription: ‘God wanted it so.’
Her memorial is said to be tended by several of her children and is permanently covered with flowers and candles in a loving tribute to her.
Fresh details have also emerged about how staff at the Cukiernia cake shop where Paulina worked in the nearby small town of Stara Kiszewa told police that they feared she had given birth to her father’s baby.
It happened after her colleagues became suspicious that she was wearing baggy clothes to hide a secret pregnancy and then returned from a ‘holiday’ having suddenly lost weight.
A fellow worker is said to have seen two text messages sent by Paulina, confirming she had given birth to a live baby daughter.
Hanna’s memorial is covered by flowers and keepsakes all year round, neighbors said
The inscription on the deceased mother’s tombstone reads: ‘God wanted it so’
Paulina has been charged with incest and murdering two babies she gave birth to from her alleged consensual relationship with her father.
Piotr is also accused of two counts of incest, one with Paulina and the other relating to the rape of his older daughter, and three counts of murder.
The third murder charge is said to relate to a baby he had with his older daughter who allegedly fled from their home to start a new life several years ago.
Many of the 180 residents of Czerniki which takes its name from the Polish word for ‘blackberries’ are racked with guilt about their failure to earlier unmask the ‘monster’ in their midst.
Sickened villagers have placed three glass memorial candle holders along with a cuddly toy elephant in the front garden of the Gierasik family home as a tribute to the dead babies.
Some have admitted that they were scared of Piotr who previously lived in Gdansk with his family and moved to Czerniki with his wife and their four daughters and eight sons 20-years-ago.
They are said to have initially embraced country life, and enjoyed mushroom foraging trips to local forests.
But Piotr was known for his angry outbursts and was often heard screaming at his late wife and children.
Two babies were buried in shallow graves in the basement, while a third is understood to have been left in a bag
The infants were found in the basement of their family’s home
The front door has been shut as Polish police continue their investigation
In recent years, villagers would sometime see him strolling hand-in-hand with Paulina who lived at her home with him and her 24-year-old disabled brother.
They say that Paulina often appeared more like a wife than a daughter, referring to her father by his first name instead of calling him ‘Dad’.
The father and daughter are also said to have been seen choosing perfumes together on rare outings to a local shop and calling each other, ‘Darling’.
Others have described hearing the sound of ‘moaning and screaming’ coming from their rundown brick and stone built house beside a boggy field on the outskirts of Czerniki.
Former Polish soldier Sylvester, 38, who lives nearby with his wife and three children and runs a firewood business, told MailOnline: ‘We have lived here for five years.
‘It is a lovely village and very peaceful. I know the guy who has been arrested, but only to say “Good morning”. He is a strange man who doesn’t speak to his neighbours.
‘This is a friendly place where people talk to each other and I would say his behaviour was alien to that.
‘He spent most of his time inside, but you would sometimes see him going out for a walk with his kids. When we first came here, there were about five children living with him.
According to prosecutors, two of the murdered children came from his relationship with the 20-year-old who they say was in a consensual relationship with her father
Prosecutors added that they suspected him of killing the third baby
The tiny rural village in the middle of northern Poland has just 180 residents
‘He didn’t work and lived on benefits he received as the carer for his son who is disabled with mental health difficulties.
‘The boy did not speak to me, apart from saying “hello”. You can only wonder if he knew what was going on as he was under the same roof.
‘I was told by some local people a few years ago that they thought he was having sex with his daughter. I was shocked, but there was nothing I could do.
‘I didn’t really believe it when I heard it the first time. I couldn’t confront him or report it because I had no proof.
‘Then I heard that about eight or nine-years-ago, before we came here, someone had made a complaint about him sleeping with his daughter.
‘It was considered by a judge who decided there was not enough evidence to proceed with a case. I was told that the neighbour who accused him was made to apologise.
‘The daughter Paulina used to have long hair until about six-months ago and wore normal womens’ clothes.
‘But then she had her hair cut short and started walking around in a big blue jacket which looked like it belonged to her father.
Czerniki’s citizens have been accused of holding a ‘conspiracy of silence’ over the allegedly known relationship between the father and daughter
Unconfirmed reports say that one of the bodies wrapped in a black plastic bin liner was about three weeks old at the time of death
Piotr, 54, and Paulina Gierasik, 20, are facing life in prison for murder and incest
‘I think she was wearing it to disguise that she was pregnant because it made it difficult to see.’
Asked if he believed that Paulina had truly consented to sex with her father, Sylvester said: ‘He is her father and she has to do what she is told.
‘If I was sure that something was happening, I would have called the police, but I had no proof.
‘It is terrible to now know what has been going on. It is like something from a TV or radio drama, but it is real life.’
Another villager who asked not to be named suggested that Piotr’s 24-year-old disabled son gave her a hint about what was happening in the house.
She said: ‘He told me he would move out. He said: “My dad beats me, calls me names and throws me out of the house. He curses at me.”
‘He added that there is something else. I asked what, and he said it was “father and daughter” and that’s why they kicked him out.
‘I don’t know if he saw it, but he must have seen it because how did he know they were doing something like that? When I passed by, it was always dark and the windows were covered.’
Both the father and daughter are currently in detention as the investigation continues
The house where the remains of three newborns were found is seen in this general view
The woman admitted that she did not report her concerns to local social services.
MailOnline can reveal that Piotr tried to pose as a loving father on social media, regularly re-posting viral pictures of sick children to make out that he cared about them.
He described himself on Facebook as a widower as well as a fan of rock bands U2 and Led Zeppelin.
But he avoided posting pictures of himself or his family apart from a picture showing Paulina with her face smeared with what appears to be chocolate sauce and the caption: ‘Check it out’.
Most of his other pictures showed rustic views of local woods, lakes and farmland often covered in snow during the harsh Polish winters.
Police now appear to have completed their searches at his house, but have left scenes of crime tape surrounding it as a reminder of the horrors that took place there.
Five tattered and torn towels are still hanging on a washing line in the garden, next to Piotr’s ageing Opel estate car.
Little can be seen through the net curtains of the grimy windows, but plants in the garden in makeshift containers fashioned from old painted tyres appear well cared for.
One upstairs window is covered with a wooden board as a makeshift repair after being smashed and a sheet remains hanging outside the front door to stop people peering in.
Ironically, the house is overlooked by a large wooden crucifixion cross which acts as a symbol of the villagers’ Christian belief on the other side of the road.
Paulina is said to have worked for at least a year as an apprentice at the Cukiernia shop, learning the art of making cakes which are a popular delicacy in Poland.
Staff at the shop said she worked behind the scenes in a preparation area rather than dealing directly with the public.
Her father drove her the two miles from their home to the shop every day, and then picked her up after work in an apparent attempt to control her.
Colleagues say she started wearing loose clothes earlier this year as if she were trying to hide her belly.
After coming back from a week’s holiday at the start of September, the shocked workers saw she appeared totally transformed as she was thinner, weaker, constantly tired and was forced to keep sitting down.
Workmates also noticed her covering her nipples with tissues because her milk was leaking, it has been reported.
Katarzyna Matyszczak, the manager of the shop, said: ‘Everyone was gossiping about it. His youngest daughter Paulina is a beautiful girl. Everyone said she was pregnant. So I asked about it directly.
‘She denied it. One of her friends didn’t believe it. I won’t say who, but she was the one who informed the relevant services about the whole matter, because she suspected that she had given birth to a child.’
Marian Pick, the mayor of the Star Kiszewa commune which covers Czerniki, confirmed to Fakt that authorities were tipped off on September 4 that ‘something bad might have happened’.
He added: ‘The next day, the manager sent a social worker to the house in Czerniki to confirm this information, because a similar episode had already happened in this family, but then the court found that it was slander and untrue.
‘The employee went there in the afternoon. She had to do all this by trickery to find Paulina and her intellectually disabled brother. And that’s how it happened.
‘At the beginning, their father was listening to the conversation, but our employee asked him to leave them alone. He must have lost his guard because he agreed.
‘Paulina was lying on the bed fully clothed. She said that she lied down because she didn’t feel well and her stomach hurt a bit.
‘The woman already saw that something was wrong, because Paulina no longer had a pregnant belly.
‘The next day, the manager reported to the police that the girl had been pregnant, but was no longer pregnant. We did what we could, what we had the tools to do. The police approached it professionally.
‘A few days later, the police came to Czerniki, took Paulina to the hospital. The doctor confirmed that she had been pregnant, but there was no pregnancy.
‘Then the police took the girl into custody and she testified that “yes”, she had been pregnant, and the body of the baby was buried in the basement.
‘She added that there were two more bodies. There were three little people buried in the basement. We are all shocked. This father can only be called a degenerate, nothing else.’
Police are understood to have used specialist dogs and ground radar equipment to help them find the bodies buried in the dirt floor of the basement.
A huge pile of soil, possibly from the excavation, has been left by an outbuilding in the garden of the house.
Piotr and Paulina were formally charged on Saturday when permission was given for them to be held under arrest for three months, pending further inquiries.
Police from the Criminal Investigation Department headquarters in Gdansk are said to be awaiting the results of autopsies to try and establish how the babies died.
Unconfirmed reports suggest that Paulina’s most recent baby may have lived for several days.
A woman described by local media as being ‘close’ to the family’ told Fakt newspaper of her fears that there might be more victims.
She said: ‘One of the daughters once gave birth to twins, the circumstances of this case are unexplained, the children disappeared.
‘About 2-3 years ago, one of Piotr’s daughters was pregnant with twins. Now we start to remember everything.
‘He took the girl to another province supposedly to give birth, to Toru? [90 miles away] or Ciechocinek [100 miles].
‘He assured social workers that everything was fine and they believed him, but now no one knows what happened to these children. Why did he take her such a long way? Why not to Gdansk? [35 miles].’