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Murder Charges May Be Dropped Against Bei Bei Shuai

Robin Marty

Without a usable pathology report, the charges no longer stand up to scrutiny.

Most people agree that Bei Bei Shuai, the Chinese immigrant who was charged with murder after her premature infant died a few days after birth, should never have been arrested in the first place. Even Shuai’s attempt to kill herself by ingesting rat poison was somehow responsible for the infant’s death, jailing a woman who had tried to commit suicide was an unprecedented step that could leave pregnant women with suicidal thoughts afraid to go seek help if they hurt themselves.

Now, those murder charges, may finally be dropped. A judge had ruled that a pathology report that stated that the rat poison caused the infant’s death was “unreliable” and cannot be used in the case.


[Marion County Judge Sheila] Carlisle wrote that [Dr. Jolene] Clouse consistently repeated her stand that the rat poison Shuai ate caused her daughter’s death, but never said how she knew it was rat poison and not indomethacin, a drug given to pregnant women that can have a similar effect. Carlisle said Clouse also never considered that brain bleeds occur often in premature infants without any clear cause. She said Clouse’s methodology was flawed.

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“The opinion of Dr. Clouse on the cause of A.S.’s death is therefore unreliable,” Carlisle wrote in the ruling issued Friday.

The prosecutor will now need to decide whether to continue with the murder case without the report, appeal the judges decision, or drop the murder charges against Shuai.

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