She had fallen asleep with her 3-week-old baby in the same bed — while drunk.
Now five months later, investigators believe the 35-year-old Waverly, Nebraska, mom "knowingly and intentionally placed her infant son in a situation that endangered his life."
And it was that situation that probably led to her baby's death.
An autopsy found that the baby died from asphyxia due to combined suffocation and overlay, according to a release from the Lancaster County Sheriff's Office.
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Ashley Bean, the baby's mom, turned herself in at the Adult Detention Facility on Wednesday, the release states, and was arrested for felony child abuse.
Her baby, Axel Xavier Arizola, died on Dec. 17, 2017 — the same day emergency crews responded to a report of a baby who was found without a pulse, the Lincoln Journal Star reported.
Through an investigation, authorities learned that Bean had been "highly intoxicated" when she fell asleep with her baby in the same bed, the release states. She became intoxicated hours before the 911 call was made at about 8 a.m, according to the release.
“During the interviews it was determined that she was under the influence of alcohol to the point that she was unable to take care of her infant child,” Capt. Ben Houchin with the Lancaster County Sheriff's Office told the Nebraska Radio Network. “And, due to her intoxication, the child was injured which resulted in the child’s death.”
In a search warrant viewed by the Lincoln Journal Star, investigator Christina Worster said she believed Bean had at least eight tequila shots in the two days before Arizola was found dead. She also believed Bean had a "pull" of tequila the same morning of the 911 call.
"This isn't a co-sleeping issue," Houchin told KETV. "This is an issue pertaining to an adult who was intoxicated to the point they were unable to take proper care of their 3-week-old."
Court records obtained by KETV said that Bean had a blood alcohol level of 0.19 when tested hours later at the hospital — that's two times the legal driving limit.
When Bean turned herself in on Wednesday, she had a blood alcohol level of 0.09, according to the station — that's just over the legal driving limit.
Felony child abuse is punishable up to three years in prison and 18 months of post-release supervision or a $10,000 fine — or both, according to the release.
KETV reported that the judge sent a $15,000 percentage bond on the condition that Bean cannot drink alcohol.
The baby's paternal grandmother, Lenor Lopez, told KETV that she saw Axel just one day before he died.
"She (Bean) was just saying how tired she was, and the baby was a lot of work and whatever," Lopez said. " ... I am not here to judge Ashley. I said there is somebody up higher that will judge her and that knows the truth."
The Sheriff's Office said the baby showed no signs of "obvious violence."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said earlier this year that about 3,500 U.S. babies die from sleep-related deaths each year, including from sudden infant death syndrome, accidental suffocation and deaths from unknown causes.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends against bed-sharing with an infant and against alcohol and drug consumption by those with a baby.