Missing pregnant woman, baby found dead in Missouri; married couple in custody on kidnapping charges

The bodies of Ashley Bush and her 31-week-old daughter were found in different locations, police say

Friday, November 4, 2022
Missing pregnant woman found dead; married couple in custody
EMBED <>More Videos

Amber Waterman and Jamie Waterman, of Jane, Missouri, were arrested on kidnapping charges after Ashley Bush, a missing pregnant woman, was found dead.

JANE, Mo. -- A married couple are in custody after a missing pregnant Arkansas woman and the baby she was carrying were found dead in southern Missouri, KHSB/KHOG is reporting.

Ashley Bush, 33, was 31 weeks pregnant. Her daughter's name was Valkyrie Grace Willis.

The bodies of Bush and her daughter were found in separate locations, police said. The baby was found Wednesday and Bush was found Thursday.

Bush appeared to have been killed by a gunshot wound.

A married couple, Amber Waterman and Jamie Waterman, of Jane, Missouri, were arrested on kidnapping charges. Law enforcement said it was too early to state a motive.

SEE ALSO | Restaurant owner charged with strangling pregnant girlfriend to death, hiding body

"This is just a reminder that there is evil in the world," Benton County Prosecutor Nathan Smith said. "People do evil things. And that someone would prey upon a pregnant woman at her most vulnerable state is unimaginable but unfortunately that's the world we live in."

Bush was last seen on Monday, when she got into a pickup truck with a woman she met online named "Lucy." Bush had been looking for a job working from home and "Lucy" had agreed to pick her up to take her to a job interview.

Law enforcement later said "Lucy" was actually a woman named Amber Waterman. Officials were not yet able to lay out a precise timeline of the kidnapping and killings.

Bush had three children, ages 8, 7, and 2, and was engaged to be married.

Josh Willis, Bush's fiancé, said he's devastated by the news and trying to stay strong for their daughter.

In a statement, Willis said: "I'm disgusted in the whole situation. I wish that Ashley and Valkyrie were alive and home with us all. I can't believe that there are people out there that would do something like this. She was a great mother, a wonderful wife, a very outgoing, caring, and kind person. They didn't deserve any of this. There are 3 amazing kids here that just lost their mother/best friend and little sister. I just lost my wife and daughter. We are all going to support each other through this but we are all devastated in the whole thing. We all were hoping and praying they would come home safely. I've lost all hope in humanity. I appreciate all the help out there from everyone."