Ashley Bush, also known as Ashley Boone was a 33 year old woman from Maysville, Arkansas. She was 31 weeks pregnant with a baby girl that she had named Valkyrie Grace Willis. She had three other children, aged 8,7 and 2 and was engaged to her fiance Josh Willis.
Ashley’s Facebook is filled with pics of her kids.
It seems like Ashley’s pregnancy was a tough one. She made some posts about it in Facebook groups:
“With Ashley being pregnant, she has been having complications with this pregnancy and the doctor took her off work,” her partner Josh said in a recent interview.
Around the same time that Ashley was making these posts, a woman named Lucy Barrow was offering up baby items on Facebook.
I believe that Ashley decided that she needed to find a way to make some more money, to be able to provide for the new baby and that is how she and ‘Lucy’ met.
On Friday October 28, 2022, Ashley arranged to meet with Lucy at the Gravette Public Library. Josh went with Ashley to this meeting. Lucy arrived driving a pickup truck.
During this meeting, Lucy and Ashley discussed an employment opportunity at a company called Conduent. Conduent is a legit company that offers digital platforms for business and government.
The meeting seemed to go well. Josh said “She handed Ashley a bunch of paperwork, that they would email her and told her to wait for the boss to contact her for another interview.”
That night, Lucy messaged Ashley and said that her supervisor at Conduent wanted to meet with her on Monday October 31, 2022 in Bentonville, Arkansas at 9am. Some texts went back and forth and the two women agreed that Ashley would meet Lucy at the Handi-Stop convenience store on Monday. The plan was for Lucy to then drive Ashley to meet with the supervisor.
So Monday arrives. Josh drove Ashley to the planned meeting place. He has said that Lucy turned up in the same pickup truck that she had driven to the library meeting. Ashley drove away with Lucy.
I am not sure if there was ever a meeting with the supervisor, but Ashley remained with Lucy til around 3pm. What happened for that period of time is currently unknown. Just before 3pm, Ashley messaged Josh to say that she was headed back to the convenience store where he could pick her up.
Josh was waiting at the store when he saw Lucy’s pickup drive by again, and the car didnt stop. It turned on to Highway 43, and headed north. He has said he saw Lucy driving and Ashley in the passenger seat. He tried immediately to call Ashley but her phone went straight to voicemail.
“All I saw was her and the lady she rode with both pass me, neither one stopped, the driver looked at me and kept going,” Josh said.
Josh seemed to become concerned fairly quickly.
“We tried all night long texting her, calling her, trying to get her to answer,” he said.
The family started calling to learn more about “Lucy” and the company she allegedly worked for.
The company told him there is no “Lucy” who works for the company.
The Benton County Sheriff issued an alert for Ashley which basically just went over the timeline of her disappearance, including Lucy and the convenience store sighting. It also included what she was last known to be wearing:
She was last seen wearing a black hoodie, blue jeans and black slip-on shoes. She is 31 weeks pregnant.
Josh met with police the following day, November 1. He had been able to track Ashley’s phone and found it discarded on the side of the highway. Thankfully, he knew the passcode for the phone and detectives were able to access it quickly.
This info is from the criminal complaint:
The police took Josh back to the Handi-Stop and they were approached there by a person named Rick Burrow (not to be confused with Lucy Barrows). Rick said that he had been with another person named Sawyer McGee and they had been travelling south on Highway 43 on October 31. He said they saw a male travelling North who threw a red and black cellphone from his moving vehicle. Rick told police the male had been driving either a grey or light blue Chevy pickup.
Police worked quickly and got information from Meta.
The police also got cell phone records for Ashley and Josh, so that they could get a timeline of where Ashley’s phone travelled.
So, all signs were pointing to Amber and Jamie Waterman. Police went to their home and the couple consented for a search to take place.
Police found a tan pickup at the home which matched the description of the vehicle that Ashley and Lucy had driven away in. Blood was found on the center console, steering wheel and headliner.
When police interviewed Amber about her whereabouts on the day that Ashley vanished, she said she had been with her son and her husband’s cousin’s daughter all day. She told police that she had been pregnant and had gone into labor that day. Amber said a relative had contacted 911 and they drove to meet the ambulance at a store in McDonald County, Missouri. Amber told police that she delivered a stillborn child that evening.
When police asked for Amber’s phone, she told them she had lost it.
Amber also told police that she was the only one with access to the keys for the tan pickup. She also told police that she didn’t know Ashley, but that she did know Lucy Barrows. Her story was that she and Lucy had worked at Walmart together. Amber told police that she was not close with Lucy and that she hadn’t seen her for a few weeks.
Police also questioned Amber’s husband Jamie about his whereabouts.
During this session, police seized the tan pickup and took it for forensic testing.
Around this time, the FBI became involved in the case.
On November 3, police issued a search warrant. The address is redacted in the criminal complaint but the general location was Pineville, Missouri.
Police spoke again to Jamie while this search was being undertaken. He said that on October 31, in the evening, he had discovered the blood in the tan Chevy truck. He said he assumed the blood came from Amber during her pregnancy complications.
He asked Amber about the blood but said that she didn’t say where it came from. He said that Amber cleaned the blood with rags and then burned them in a barrel. Jamie said that he then collected trash from their house and burned the trash in the same barrel.
He also started to confess. He said that after police had left their home following a prior search, at approximately 5am on Wednesday November 2, Amber confessed that she had called Ashley. He said she quickly changed her story and said that Lucy had killed Ashley.
Amber took Jamie to Ashley’s body. He said that Ashley was wearing clothes and was lying face down next to a boat near their house. The body had been covered with a blue tarp.
Amber removed a ring from Ashley’s finger and rolled the body onto the tarp. Jamie then dragged Ashley’s body to a firepit. Amber asked Jamie to get gas. He bought a gallon of chainsaw bar chain oil to Amber. She then left the tarp and put some of the oil over the body. She then started collecting wood to throw on the fire.
Jamie dragged a small sofa out to use as fuel for the fire – Amber threw the sofa on the fire. It burned for around one hour and Amber then put the fire out with a garden hose.
Jamie attempted to remove the body from the burn pile but he said it was still very hot. He got a new tarp and he then rolled Ashley’s body on the tarp.
The couple put Ashley onto the bed of Jamie’s blue GMC pickup. They couldn’t drive the body far as Jamie said the truck was having transmission problems and was unable to be driven long distances.
They decided on a place to leave the body. They put Ashley’s remains on the ground and took the tarp with them. When they got home, Amber burned the tarp.
Following his confession, Jamie then took police to Ashley’s body.
The info we have gone through so far has come from the criminal complaint, but we have learned more about the circumstances.
In regards to Amber being pregnant:
McDonald County Sheriff Evenson said they responded to reports of a newborn baby not breathing on Monday (October 31 – the day Ashley went missing) night. EMS intercepted the couple near Longview, Mo. as they were on the way to a hospital.
A medical helicopter was on standby to take both Amber and the baby to the hospital.
The McDonald County Coroner, BJ Goodwin, was called to take the baby to an area funeral home after EMS was unable to revive her.
The coroner has said that Amber had the placenta in her underwear when medical personnel showed up. This led Jamie to believe she had given birth.
Amber refused any medical treatment. The baby was transported to the funeral home and the placenta was retrieved from Amber.
On November 1, Jamie and Amber went to a funeral home owned by the coroner. They wanted to plan a service for the baby who they said was named Dakota, for November 2 and said they wanted to cremate her remains. The service was scheduled for 1pm on November 2.
The morning of the scheduled service, the Benton County Coroner called BJ and asked for a dna swab of the baby.
“The Benton County Coroner calls me and says, ‘Hey, there is something going on with this baby. We think this is connected to the kidnapping,’” BJ said.
The coroner told BJ that the vehicle descriptions matched and that Benton County wanted to do an autopsy on the baby. BJ agreed but insisted the funeral happen first in case there was a mistake.
“When they get here Wednesday, we do the service with their family – everyone was very distraught – which is normal after parents who go through something so traumatic,” he said.
He says he was very cautious as it seemed “far-fetched” and the Waterman’s family said Amber had already miscarried four times, so they were very “emotionally upset.”
BJ alleges the Watermans tried to dispose of Bush’s body the same day they showed up for the baby’s memorial service.
“They got cleaned up after burning and disposing her body and showed up for a funeral,” BJ said.
BJ said the funeral seemed normal and that there was nothing out of the ordinary. He said less than 12 people attended.
He says the funeral was exactly what you would expect of parents who lost a child. Goodwin says nothing was out of the ordinary at the time and less than a dozen people were there.
The Benton County Coroner arrived at the funeral home to take the baby’s remains to conduct an autopsy. BJ has said that Amber’s mood changed and she asked multiple times if DNA tests would be performed. He says as soon as Jamie heard that, he “got up and ran out of funeral home.”
BJ has since made a statement about the death of the baby:
“The baby was cut out of the mother after the mother was killed,” he said. “I don’t know if the baby came out alive or dead.”
We have also been made aware of some social media posts that Amber had made prior to this. In September, she made the following posts:
This is what ur leaving behind.♬ You Are The Reason – Alex Porat
Ashley’s partner Josh made the following statement around November 4:
“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 three 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.”
The Watermans appeared in court for the first time on November 4.
Amber has been charged with one count of kidnapping resulting in death. Jamie has been charged with one count of being an accessory after the fact to kidnapping resulting in death.
They were both assigned a public defender and the federal prosecutor asked the court to hold them without bond until their trial.
Amber and Jamie were booked into the Greene County Missouri jail late Nov. 4.
We have also learned that Ashley’s cause of death was gunshot.
In Arkansas, someone who kills a pregnant woman is charged with two counts of murder, Nathan Smith, Benton County prosecutor said. It wasn’t clear where Ashley or her child were killed, so homicide charges have not yet been filed.
Amber appeared in court on Wednesday November 9.
The hearing only lasted a few minutes and was held to decide if Amber should remain in custody until the trial.
Magistrate Judge David Rush decided that she is a danger to the community and should be detained. The Judge said he will give a full explanation in a few days.
She is due back in court again on November 21.
THE MURDER OF SAVANNA GREYWIND
Savanna Marie Greywind was 22 when she was murdered on September 3, 2017. She was 8 months pregnant at the time she died.
As some background into Savanna, she was born to Norberta and Joe Greywind in Belcourt, North Dakota on August 9, 1995.
Savanna worked at a nursing home and had been dating her boyfriend Ashton Matheny since she was a freshman. They had planned to start their family together and Savanna was excited to become a mom. Her family have said that she loved horses, all animals, all the residents that she cared for.
Savanna was close with her family, as well as a member of the Spirit Lake Sioux Tribe.
Savanna had been living with her family in a basement apartment in Fargo, ND and she had plans to move out with Ashton.
The apartment above Savanna’s was occupied by a couple – Brooke Crews (38) and William Hoehn (32). The two had been together since 2014 and had moved into the apartment complex in May 2016
Other residents have said that the couple were known for their volatile arguments, that were often so loud they shook the other apartments.
William pleaded guilty to assault in 2016 after he threw Brooke in the bathtub. The court ordered him to have no contact with Brooke, but police were called to the apartment 6 months later following a disturbance report and William was found to be there. He was charged with violating a no-contact order.
Brooke and William had a messy life. They had 9 children between them, to many different partners. Brooke had been sued many times for not paying child support.
In January 2017, William and Brooke’s relationship was really on the rocks. She lied and told William that she was pregnant in an attempt to trap him in the relationship.
Brooke later told police that she came to believe her own lies and she believed she was pregnant with a baby due mid August 2017.
At some point, William found out that Brooke had lied to him about being pregnant and he raged. He told her to ‘produce a baby’ or else he would leave her.
Mid August came and Brooke was meant to give birth.
On August 19, 2017, Brooke texted Savanna, who was 8 months pregnant at the time and asked her to come and assist her with a sewing project. Savanna agreed. I have read that Brooke asked Savanna to help her tailor a dress and offered to pay her $20. She texted her mother at 1.24pm and said that she had ordered pizza for lunch for the family. She told another family member at this time that she was going to help Brooke with a project. This is the last time that Savanna was seen alive.
At 2.33pm, Norberta, Savanna’s mother, sent Savannah a text message. Norberta later told police that she saw William arrive at the apartment complex between 2.33pm and 2.40pm.
Savanna’s car was still parked in the complex and her purse was in the kitchen of her apartment. She was meant to give her brother a ride to work and when she didn’t show up for that, Norberta became worried very quickly. She called Fargo PD at 4.30pm to report Savannah missing. Police arrived around half an hour later, and they conducted a search of Brooke and William’s apartment, with their consent, but found nothing unusual or suspicious.
They searched the apartment again at 10.30pm on that day.
They returned again on August 20 and conducted a third search. Again, nothing was found.
We know now that when Savanna got to Brooke’s apartment to help her, Brooke tried to start an argument with Savanna by accusing her of mistreating cats.
Brooke told police that they argued and Savannah fell and hit her head on the bathroom sink.
Brooke said that Savanna was knocked out and that was when she cut the baby from Savanna’s womb. It is believed she used a utility knife or some sort of blade to remove the baby from Savanna. Savanna was alive when the baby was cut from her and she woke briefly but fell back into unconsciousness.
This additional info is from the Talk Murder With Me blog –
While Brooke was cleaning up the blood from the bathroom floor, William returned home to find Brooke holding the newborn. “This is our baby,” she said to William, “this is our family”. William asked if Savanna was dead, to which Brooke replied, “I don’t know. Please help me.” According to Brooke, William left the bathroom and came back with a rope, which he tightened around Savanna’s neck until she was no longer breathing. He then said, “If she wasn’t dead before, she is now.”
It is unknown whether Savannah ultimately died of blood loss or strangulation; the autopsy only listed her cause of death as “homicidal violence”.
Brooke and William then hid Savanna’s body in a bathroom closet and then put it in a hollowed-out dresser. They hid the baby under bed covers during searches.
On August 21, 2017, Savanna’s body was dumped (still in the dresser) into the Red River in North Fargo. William’s story was that both he and Brooke dumped the body, and they had the baby with them while they did it. Brooke’s version of events was that she stayed at the apartment complex with the baby while William dumped Savanna alone.
On August 22, 2017, William was arrested on an outstanding warrant. He was arrested after he returned home from buying diapers at Walmart. Brooke has since said that she believed they would be caught following this incident. They had the baby in a bag however, and crazily, the police did not find the baby on this date.
William had apparently told coworkers that he and Brooke had a baby, and upon learning this, combined with the diaper shopping trip, police executed a search warrant on August 24, 2017.
The baby was finally found this time. Brooke and William were both arrested. A DNA test was undertaken and the baby found in Brooke’s apartment was confirmed to belong to Savanna.
On August 27, 2017, Savanna’s body was discovered in the Red River. She was found by kayakers and her body had been wrapped in garbage bags.
The legal process for this case happened quickly for Brooke, thankfully. On December 11, 2017, Brooke pled guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit kidnapping and lying to police.
Brooke cried throughout her testimony and apologised for the hurt she had caused Savanna’s family. “There is no excuse. There is no rationalization. There is nothing,” Brooke said during a prepared statement. “My actions devastated a family and shocked the community that I called home.”
Brooke was sentenced to life in prison, without the chance of parole on February 2, 2018. “I’m just really, really, really sorry. “I wish I could take their pain,” she said. “I wish I hadn’t done this. There is no excuse. There is no rationalization. There is nothing. I know it doesn’t help, but I am sorry.”
“I am guilty,” Brooke said. “I deserve every year that I get.”
William’s legal case was more drawn out. He was charged with with conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, and providing false information to police. He initially pleaded not guilty to all three charges.
On September 4, 2018, he changed his pleas for the conspiracy to commit kidnapping and providing false info charges to guilty. His trial for the conspiracy to commit murder charge started on September 18 and ran for 9 days.
Brooke testified in court during the trial.
“You never told Will that you had planned to do this, is that right?” William’s attorney Daniel Borgan asked.
“Not kill Savanna for her baby, no,” Brooke replied.
“In fact, there was never a conversation at all about killing Savanna and taking her baby,” Daniel said.
“Not explicitly,” she said.
He was acquitted of this charge on September 28, 2018. He was originally sentenced to life in prison, but the sentence was overturned by the North Dakota Supreme Court. In October 2019, he was re-sentenced to 20 years in prison.
One silver lining in this case is that Savanna’s daughter survived and is thriving. Savanna and Ashton had picked out the name Haisley Jo before Savanna was murdered. Her full name is Haisley Jo Greywind-Matheny.
Haisley is now five years old at the time of recording. Ashton has said she is a calm and happy child who is always smiling.
One thought on “The murders of Ashley Bush and Savanna Greywind for their unborn babies”
Just listened to this episode and had a thought re: conspiracy to murder. A lot of times, if the state can’t determine what killed a victim, like Savannah, they will can’t bring murder against a certain individual. Seems like here, they don’t really know who killed her – was it the woman, and Savannah died due to loss of blood? Or was it the man who strangled her? If the state can’t prove the woman was the person who killed her and the state can’t prove it was the man who killed her, they often charge both with “conspiracy” to murder – they both wanted to murder her and both tried to murder her, and one of them was successful.
– a San Diego attorney who hopes to shed light on the issue
(Sorry – I listened to this during a run and don’t remember names!)