INDIANAPOLIS — A Chinese immigrant charged with killing her fetus by eating rat poison while she was pregnant pleaded guilty Friday to a misdemeanor count of criminal recklessness as part of a deal with prosecutors.
Bei Bei Shuai, 36, pleaded guilty to criminal recklessness and was sentenced to time served, which was 178 days, Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. Charges of murder and feticide were dropped.
Curry said he decided to accept the lesser charge because a number of evidentiary rulings by the court had hurt the prosecution's case. He says he decided to accept the lesser charge rather than to appeal those decisions.
"There were evidentiary rulings that would have made our case difficult to proceed," he said. "We felt it was appropriate to resolve it with the plea and with some acknowledgement of culpability and everyone can move on."
A message was left at the office of Shuai's attorney, Linda Pence, by the AP late Friday afternoon seeking comment.
Prosecutors had argued that Shuai, a Shanghai native, killed her child by eating rat poison in December 2010, when she was eight months pregnant. Shuai gave birth to Angel on Dec. 31. The baby died three days later.
The saga began Dec. 23, 2010, when a friend of Shuai’s who lives in Anderson found her in her car at a gas station in Anderson. He thought she looked ill and suggested he take her to his home so his wife could help her.
Shuai later acknowledged she ate rat poison in her Indianapolis home to kill herself because her boyfriend — the father of the child she was carrying — had left her.
She first went to an Anderson hospital but was transferred to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, where she gave birth to a daughter, Angel, on Dec. 31 via cesarean section. Angel was put on life support, but those machines later were removed, and she died Jan. 3 from bleeding in her brain.