By JAMES C. McKINLEY Jr • August 12, 1990 • A 19-year-old man who had moved to Queens from Nebraska two weeks ago was charged yesterday with killing his 6-day-old son, dismembering the body and then feeding it to a German shepherd he was training as a guard dog, the police said.
Detectives said yesterday that the baby's crying early Friday morning woke the father, Jason Radtke, who took the infant out of a crib and began to walk him. When the baby suddenly wet him, Mr. Radtke became enraged, the police said, and threw the child to the floor, killing him.
Mr. Radtke is believed to have then dismembered the baby's body with a razor and left the remains ''in a position to be consumed by the German shepherd,'' Capt. John Creegan of the New York detectives said.
To Cover Up the Death
Captain Creegan said Mr. Radtke had confessed in written and oral statements that he threw the baby to the floor and dismembered him to cover up the death.
Mr. Radtke was arrested at the 104th Precinct station house late Friday night after being questioned by detectives. He was charged with two counts of second-degree murder, one for intentional murder and one for depraved indifference, Captain Creegan said.
Mr. Radtke, who called the police, and the boy's mother, Linda Boyce, also 19, at first told detectives that the dog had attacked and eaten the baby while they slept in their apartment on the top floor of 1634 Stephen Street, a two-family house in Ridgewood, Queens. They said that their son, Anthony Radtke, was missing when they awoke at 6:45 A.M.
But an autopsy Friday evening on the dog, who was killed by the authorities, and the remains of the infant indicated that the baby was killed and dismembered before the dog ate him, Ellen Borakove, a spokeswoman for the Medical Examiner, said.
An 11-month-old child, Kayla, was found sleeping unharmed in a crib in the living room, the police said. She was placed in foster care yesterday.
Pretended to Be Asleep
Ms. Boyce was not charged, Captain Creegan said. She pretended to be asleep during the crime and had agreed to cooperate with the police, the captain said.
The couple moved to New York City two weeks ago from the small town of Alma, in southern Nebraska, Deputy Sheriff Kevin Einspahr of the Harlan County Sheriff's Department said. Alma is a farming community of 1,200 people 200 miles southwest of Lincoln, the state's capital.
The son of a local auto mechanic, Mr. Radtke was born and raised in neighboring Furnas County and three months ago moved to Stamford, a tiny farming town in Harlan County about 15 miles from Alma, the sheriff said. There he was seen frequently dating Miss Boyce, who had an 11-month-old baby from a previous marriage, Deputy Einspahr said. Both worked at a local Dairy Barn selling ice cream, the sheriff said.
A month ago, Mr. Radtke made a trip to Maine, where he bought a 3-year-old, 90-pound, pedigreed German shepherd named Appoll, the sheriff said. When he returned, he told the sheriffs in both Harlan and Furnas Counties that he intended to go into business raising and training police and guard dogs.
Sheriff Einspahr said Mr. Radtke moved to New York to study dog handling. A spokesman for the the K-9 Behavioral Science Center in Maspeth, Queens, said Mr. Radtke had attended classes there for the last 10 days. Anthony was born in Booth Memorial Hospital on Aug. 4 and weighed 7 pounds.