Tulsa Police Arrest Mother For Child Abuse Murder Of 3-Month-Old

Friday, July 7th 2017, 3:00 pm
By: News On 6

Tulsa police arrested the mother of a 3-month-old baby that died after being taken to the hospital in critical condition Thursday.

Police say 3-month-old Zion Jones died from his injuries Friday. Hours later, police arrested his mother, 22-year-old Ashley Ledbetter, for child abuse murder.

Police say they were contacted about baby Zion Jones Thursday morning when he was taken to a Tulsa hospital.

“Numerous injuries. All of them were very severe,” said Detective Matthew Snow with the Child Crisis Unit. "Traumatic injuries to the head, had numerous skull fractures, had a lacerated liver, had a lacerated spline."

Court documents state the baby’s status was considered life threatening and that he was not going to live.

7/7/2017 3-Month-Old In Critical Condition; TPD Investigating Child Abuse Reports

Police went to the home of Ledbetter's mother near 60th and Sheridan - where she had been staying. They served a search warrant and carried out several large evidence bags.

They also interviewed extended family and both parents, saying Ledbetter's story wasn't consistent.

Police say Ledbetter first told them she left the room, came back and found her baby on the floor unresponsive.

But during the investigation, police say Ledbetter admitted to getting upset about him crying and tied a blanket around his head to hold a pacifier in his mouth.

When that didn't work, police say she slammed him five times, face down on the bed.

"Likely slammed the baby down several times on the baby's face, and the baby suffered quite a few injuries," Snow said.

Police say at one point the baby boy bounced off and hit his head on the dresser, then landed on the floor.

"The 3-month-old then succumbed to his injuries earlier today," said Snow.

We tried to speak to friends or family who were present when Ledbetter was arrested but they declined.

Police encourage anyone who cannot care for their child, or is struggling to manage their child, to reach out for help. You can call 211 for basic needs, mental health issues and child support.