The Herald Bulletin

January 3, 2011

Police: Pregnant woman ate rat poison

Baby dies three days after birth; mother may face charges

By Brandi Watters
The Herald Bulletin

ANDERSON, Ind. — A pregnant woman who allegedly ate rat poison resulting in the death of her newborn baby was first treated for the poisoning in Anderson.

Bei Bei Shuai, 34, reportedly traveled from her Indianapolis home to Anderson to visit friends on Dec. 23 and informed them that she’d eaten rat poison.

Her friends took her to Saint John’s Medical Center in Anderson. She was transported to Methodist Hospital one day later, according to Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department spokesman Kendale Adams.

Adams said Shuai stayed at the hospital receiving treatment and gave birth to a baby girl on Dec. 31.

The infant died Sunday at 1:30 a.m.

At 10:40 p.m. Sunday, IMPD officers were notified of the infant’s death by Marion County Coroner Lloyd Sprowl.

Adams said the woman has not yet been charged, as police have not yet interviewed her since she’s still receiving treatment, but Shuai faces criminal charges in connection with the death.

“The potential charges are either murder or attempted feticide,” Adams said.

The Marion County coroner’s office has ruled that the baby’s death was caused by Shuai’s ingestion of rat poison.

Shuai is in stable condition at Methodist Hospital.

Adams said Shuai has no prior history and has no other children.

Ann Houseworth of the Department of Children’s Services said DCS has opened an assessment into the matter, and is called to compile a report in such cases. “State statute requires that our agency assess all child fatalities that are sudden, unexplained, or unexpected,” she said.

DCS will investigate the circumstances of the death, she said. “We will collect information from our report sources, hospital, family members, anyone with information about the circumstances.”

Police say they know why the woman took the rat poison. “There is a motive but we’re not releasing that,” Adams said.

Contact Brandi Watters: 640-4847, brandi.watters@heraldbulletin.com.