Springfield, MO

Amber Waterman: Her husband pleads innocent to helping her dispose of pregnant victim’s body

Lavinia Thompson

In light of his wife being charged with the kidnapping and murder of a pregnant woman in order to steal her baby, Jamie Waterman has pleaded innocent to being involved in the crime, according to the Arkansas Democrat Gazette.

Waterman entered the plea Monday in a Springfield federal court, facing a charge of accessory after the fact to kidnapping resulting in death, the Gazette says.

A criminal complaint from the Department of Justice (DOJ) outlines how 42-year-old Jamie allegedly helped his wife, 42-year-old Amber, dispose of the body of Ashley Bush.

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Jamie WatermanPhoto byMcdonald County Detention Center

Bush was 31 weeks pregnant when her fiance, Joshua Willis, reported her missing on Oct. 31, 2022, at about 6:30 p.m., the complaint says. He told police that Bush had met a woman named “Lucy” for a job opportunity, but Bush never returned after they made arrangements for him to pick her up, the complaint says. Instead, he saw “Lucy’s” truck drive past the store with Bush in the passenger seat, then disappear, the complaint states.

Initially, Jamie denied knowing anything about Bush or her disappearance, but further questioning by police poked holes in Amber’s initial story, the complaint explains. Amber claimed she was having a miscarriage and called Jamie at work, after which he claimed he returned home to drive Amber to meet an ambulance, the complaint says.

He later admitted to knowing of Bush’s disappearance due to social media coverage, and told police that Amber didn’t disclose the murder until Nov. 2, after which she tried to pin it on “Lucy”, an alias she is accused of creating in order to lure in Bush, the complaint says.

Jamie admitted to helping his wife burn the body and then move it to another location, the complaint says.

The remains of Bush’s baby were found in a different location in Missouri, the Gazette previously reported.

Jamie faces up to 15 years in prison and a $125,000 fine, the Gazette says. His fate will be decided in an accelerated jury trial that begins on Jan. 9, 2023, before District Judge Stephen R. Bough, with a pretrial conference set for Dec. 14 at 9:30 a.m. before Magistrate Judge David P. Rush, the Gazette says.

Murder charges haven’t been brought against Jamie due to a lack of evidence that he participated in the crimes in Arkansas, the Gazette adds.

An arraignment hearing and scheduling conference is set for Friday, Dec. 2, 2022, for Amber Waterman in Judge Rush’s courtroom, the Gazette says.

More on this case here.

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Long time true crime lover and blogger who has spent years reading and studying criminal psychology. I also write mystery fiction books, and have a diploma in journalism.

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