A Carlinville woman has been charged in the death of a toddler in Southern Macoupin County.
The Macoupin County Sheriff’s Office reports that on Thursday, a report was made at the Litchfield fire station that a minor child was in distress. It was determined moments later a 3-year old male child was deceased.
The initial investigation was handled by the Litchfield Police Department but investigators determined the unrevealed acts that appeared to lead to the child’s death occurred in Macoupin County and a coordinated investigation between the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Department, Carlinville Police Department, and Litchfield Police Department was conducted.
According to the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Office, multiple search warrants were executed with the assistance of the Montgomery County State’s Attorney Office and interviews were conducted at the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Department by detectives from the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Department and the Litchfield Police Department. Macoupin County State’s Attorney Jordan Garrison, Macoupin County Sheriff Shawn Kahl, Carlinville Police Chief David Haley, and Litchfield Police Chief Kenneth Ryker have announced the arrest of 33 year old Ashley N. Bottoms of Carlinville.
According to charging documents obtained by the State Journal Register, Bottoms was breaking up a fight between two juveniles at her Carlinville home. She allegedly threw the three-year boy against a half wall. His head struck a ledge, leading to blunt force trauma and a brain bleed. The charging documents are reported as saying that Bottoms observed that the boy was “in distress” from the head injury but did not seek medical care for him, instead driving him around in a vehicle for three hours. The SJ-R reports that Bottoms was the girlfriend of the boy’s father. According to a conversation the SJ-R had with Macoupin County State’s Attorney Jordan Garrison, Garrison says Bottoms then drove to Litchfield to pick up her boyfriend from work. When someone in the car told Bottoms the child was unresponsive, she drove to the Litchfield Fire Department to get medical attention for the boy who was later pronounced deceased.
Bottoms has been charged with Involuntary Manslaughter and Endangering the Life of a Child causing Death, a class 2 and a class 3 felony respectively. 7th Judicial Associate Judge Joshua A. Meyer set bond in the matter at $250,000. If convicted of Class 2 Felony Involuntary Manslaughter, Bottoms could face 3-14 years in prison. If convicted of the Class 3 felony, she could face 2-10 years in prison.
Garrison said in a press release: “Crimes against children are, by their very nature, some of the worst crimes, with perpetrators leaving families destroyed by their actions. It is alleged that this defendant, a trusted household member, committed this horrific act. I would like to thank Sheriff Shawn Kahl, Chief David Haley, and Chief Kenneth Ryker for their agencies’ coordinated effort. I would also like to thank Detectives Ryan Dixon, Brian Lawton, Brian Reid, and Larry Rayburn for their swift actions leading to these charges.”
The Carlinville School District released the following statement this evening on their Facebook Page: “
Carlinville CUSD#1 was made aware that one of our PreK students passed away unexpectedly. We all feel the loss in our schools and community. The district extends its condolences during this difficult time. Counselors are available at the schools beginning Monday for staff and students needing support.”