MCDONALD COUNTY, Mo. — Federal prosecutors filed charges against Amber Waterman, 42, of Pineville, saying she kidnapped a pregnant Arkansas woman for the purpose of claiming the baby as her own.
Waterman and her husband, Jamie Waterman, 42, also from Pineville, are held in the McDonald County jail, accused in the kidnapping and death of Ashley Bush, 32, of Benton County.
According to Federal authorities, Amber Waterman took the pregnant woman to the Waterman home near Pineville, where she killed Bush and took the unborn baby. Court documents don’t reveal how the baby was born, just that the suspect told investigators she went into labor, called 911 and then drove to meet an ambulance at a store in McDonald County. The baby did not survive and Waterman would later claim to authorities she delivered a stillborn child on Halloween.
Bush, who was 31-weeks pregnant, and her fiancé, Joshua Willis, met Waterman, who they knew at the time as “Lucy,” at the Gravette, Ark. Public Library under the guise of getting baby items for their soon-to-be newborn. “Lucy,” had posted to Facebook, saying she had “a bunch of baby items if any moms to be need them” (below). During that meeting there was talk about a “Lucy” helping Bush get a job.
Willis told authorities he took Bush to a Maysville convenience store on Halloween to meet “Lucy” again, for a second job interview. “Lucy” told Bush she wanted Bush to meet her boss at a company in Bentonville and would take her and bring her back. When Willis went back to pick up his fiancée, he said the truck she was riding in, passed him and sped off. He reportedly tried to follow the truck, but was unsuccessful. That’s when he reported her missing.
Authorities said Bush was taken to the Waterman home in Pineville, killed, and burned. You can read a copy of the criminal complaints filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri below (GRAPHIC):
The Watermans are awaiting transfer to a federal detention center.