Who is Matthew J Ponomarenko? Parma dad beats autistic son with baseball bat, calls 911: 'I’m hearing voices'

'I just killed my son,' the father is heard telling the dispatcher

                            Who is Matthew J Ponomarenko? Parma dad beats autistic son with baseball bat, calls 911: 'I’m hearing voices'
Matthew J. Ponomarenko was charged for the murder of his son Jax (Parma Police)

PARMA, OHIO: Parma man Matthew J Ponomarenko, 31, was charged with aggravated murder for the death of his five-year-old son Jax Ponomarenko. Police in Parma, Ohio, said that after the father killed the boy on Thursday afternoon, March 25, he called 911 to confess to his crimes.

The chilling 911 audio released by the police not only has his confession but also makes shocking revelations about the state of his mind.  


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“I just killed my son,” the father is heard telling the dispatcher. “What do you mean you just killed your son?” the dispatcher asked. “I’m hearing voices,” Ponomarenko responded.

“He’s dead … in the living room,” he then says and asks for officers to be sent home. He had claimed at the time of the murder, there was nobody in the house with them. When asked why he killed his son, the father said, "I don't know." 

Ponomarenko told the 911 dispatcher he beat his son with a baseball bat and that his dead motionless body was on the living room floor. He stayed on the line for more than five minutes with the 911 dispatcher, telling her he did not know why he killed Jax. After a while, he just stayed on the phone without saying much, refusing to answer any further questions, saying only, "I'm shaking". When the cops arrive, he says, "They're here". 

The 911 audio can be heard here. Trigger warning: it is disturbing.

No bail for father 

According to the latest reports, on Monday, during his video appearance in front of Judge Ken Spanagel in Parma Municipal court, ordered Ponomarenko to stay in jail without bond “due to the brutality of the crime". 

According to reports, the boy’s cause of death has not yet been released by the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner,

Who was Matthew J Ponomarenko?

Ponomarenko is also reportedly on “extreme suicide watch". Jax’s uncle, Johnathan Cherni, reportedly said that the father was off his medication after recently being released from a behavioral health center, but he seemed “fine”.

Matthew Ponomarenko was arrested at the scene (Matthew J Ponomarenko/Facebook)


“My mom dropped him off today. He was fine; he was vibrant, completely content, and all of a sudden, we get hit with all this,” Cherni revealed. 

Ponomarenko has a history of crimes against children. He was previously found guilty of child endangerment and paid fines from a 2017 incident where police found him and his son, then a one-year-old, naked. Matthew’s mother reportedly called police saying he was having a mental breakdown, and running and swearing at people driving past him, a Parma police report said. He later told officers he had taken meth, mushrooms and PCP, and his mother said he was having a mental breakdown.

Jax was the "best brother"

Family and friends had gathered for a vigil for Jax on Monday. His brother sang Jax’s favorite song, 'The Wheels on the Bus'. with help from the crowd.

Jax was autistic and had learned to use a tablet, his uncle said (Matthew J Ponomarenko/Facebook)


“Dear Jax, you were the best brother I could have ever had,” the brother reportedly said. “When you were gonna grow up, I was gonna teach you how to play baseball, basketball and video games. … I always picked with you and played with you and ran around the house with you.”

The boy’s uncle said Jax was autistic and communicated with a tablet. “To say that he was a special little boy is true, but it is also not enough. It doesn’t even show the surface of Jax and what a great kid he really was,” said one of his teachers at the STEPS Academy in Parma.

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