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Missouri woman charged with fatal kidnapping planned to claim pregnant woman’s baby as her own, authorities say

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A Missouri woman arrested in the fatal kidnapping of a pregnant woman is said to have carried out the kidnapping to claim the baby, her own federal court records show Friday.

Megan Waterman was charged with kidnapping, resulting in the death of Ashley Bush, 33, and transporting her across state lines, according to a complaint filed Thursday in federal court in Missouri.

Waterman’s husband, Jamie Waterman, was accused of assisting his wife and trying to avoid her arrest, according to the documents.

Megan Waterman faces a possible life sentence or execution, the indictment said. Jamie Waterman faces up to 15 years in prison.

Bush, who was 31 weeks pregnant and from Benton County, Arkansas, was found dead on Thursday and allegedly shot, authorities there said earlier.

Ashley Bush.Benton County Sheriff’s Office via Facebook

According to an affidavit filed in federal court, Jamie Waterman told investigators that Megan Waterman allegedly burned Bush’s body in a fire pit.

Megan Waterman also allegedly burned rags that she used to clear blood from her pickup truck, he told investigators, the affidavit says.

In an interview with authorities at her home in Pineville, Missouri, Amber Waterman denied knowing Bush, saying she gave birth to a stillborn baby. on Monday, the same day Bush disappeared, the affidavit says.

Bush’s fetus, Valkyrie Grace Willis, was found dead this week in a different location than Bush, Benton County Prosecutor Nathan Smith told reporters earlier.

The affidavit does not say what happened to Valkyrie. Authorities have previously declined to say how the fetus was removed from Bush’s body.

Before Bush disappeared, she corresponded online with someone who identified herself as “Lucy,” the affidavit says. The two discussed job opportunities and later met at a local public library, according to the document.

Authorities believe “Lucy” was actually Amber Waterman, Smith has said.

On Monday, Bush believed she was going with “Lucy” to meet a work counselor in Bentonville, Arkansas, the affidavit says.

Bush’s fiancée dropped her off at a grocery store where she planned to meet her newfound acquaintance for the work event, the affidavit says. Bush later told him via text to pick her up at the same store, according to the document.

But after arriving, the fiancé, who declined to speak to NBC News, saw “Lucy” drive past the store without dropping Bush off, according to the affidavit. The fiancé saw Bush in the passenger seat of the truck, but the calls went to voicemail, the affidavit says.

Bush’s cell phone was later found along a state highway in Arkansas, the document says.

In an interview with investigators at her home, Amber Waterman described Lucy as a person she previously worked with at Walmart and who she had last seen a few weeks earlier, the affidavit says.

During a separate follow-up interview Thursday at Jamie Waterman’s job, he told authorities that after an initial visit and a voluntary search by law enforcement officers, Megan told him she had killed Bush — though she later blamed the death on “Lucy,” the declaration under oath. say.

Megan Waterman then led her husband to Bush’s body, which he said was covered with a blue tarp and lying face down next to a boat. He told investigators he helped her drag Bush’s body to a fire pit, where she set it on fire, the affidavit says.

The couple drove Bush’s body to a nearby location and dumped it, the affidavit says. Jamie Waterman led authorities to the charred remains later Thursday, the affidavit says.

The couple’s lawyers did not respond to requests for comment.

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