Rural Waverly woman charged in connection with infant son’s death

Authorities arrested and later charged a rural Waverly woman Wednesday in connection with the December death of her 3-week-old son.

Ashley Bean, 35, was arrested on suspicion of felony child abuse after she turned herself in, the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office said.

The Lancaster County Attorney’s Office said Bean was charged Wednesday with child abuse.

Around 8:05 a.m. Dec. 17, sheriff’s deputies and Waverly and Lincoln rescue squads responded to Bean’s residence after getting reports that the infant was not breathing.

After arriving at the home, authorities determined that Bean’s son did not have a pulse and was not breathing.

Bean and an adult acquaintance were inside the home when authorities arrived, the Sheriff’s Office said.

The infant, who had suffered no obvious signs of violence, was taken to Bryan Medical Center’s west campus, the Sheriff’s Office said. The infant then was transferred to Children’s Hospital & Medical Center in Omaha, where he died hours later.

An autopsy determined that the cause of death was asphyxia due to combined suffocation and the mother lying on top of the infant, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Following an investigation, authorities determined that Bean had become highly intoxicated, fell asleep with her infant son in the same bed and later awoke to find her son unresponsive.

Authorities said they think Bean placed her infant son in a situation that endangered his life.

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