Brinnon man arrested after allegedly hiding dead mother’s body

Woman had died in September 2017

BRINNON — A 62-year-old man is in jail after Jefferson County Sheriff’s deputies said they discovered he had hidden his dead mother’s body in his house for almost two years.

Gerald A. Armstrong was arrested Friday evening at his house in the 300 block of Mountain Trail Road in Brinnon after deputies arrived to perform a welfare check on his mother, Dorothy Armstrong, Jefferson County Deputy Sheriff Andy Pernsteiner said Monday.

The welfare check was called in by Gerald Armstrong’s brother, who had not heard from her in a while, Pernsteiner said.

Dorothy, 85, reportedly died in September 2017 and the county is currently conducting an autopsy, Pernsteiner said.

“It looks like she died of natural causes,” Pernsteiner said. “But it’s hard to say that now, that’s why they are doing the autopsy to see if there is anything odd.”

The Sheriff’s Office received the call Friday afternoon, but were not able to respond until that evening. When Deputy Gordon Tamura arrived, Gerald Armstrong tried to deny him entry, saying that Dorothy was sleeping, Pern-steiner said.

Tamura was insistent and Gerald Armstrong allowed him entry and “came clean,” and directed Tamura to the living room, where his mother’s body was seated in a chair, Pernsteiner said.

Gerald Armstrong is currently held in the county jail on no bail for investigation of failure to notify the coroner (a misdemeanor) and concealment of a dead body (a gross misdemeanor).

“This is one of the strangest things I’ve seen,” Pernsteiner said.

Gerald Armstrong was originally slated to appear in court Monday afternoon for his initial hearing, but that was postponed after the county decided to wait until after the autopsy report is released.

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Jefferson County reporter Zach Jablonski can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 5, or at zjablonski@peninsuladailynews.com.

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