SARASOTA, Fla. – Kristen Bury, the mother of Baby Chance, used expletives to describe her newborn son, calling him “that little f****r” and being “an a*****e,” Bury’s mother told detectives, according to discovery documents released by the state Attorney’s Office on Friday.
By the time Sally Susino told investigators from the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office about her conversations with Bury, she believed the worst had already happened to Chance Walsh.
“My heart (of) hearts, I think something happened and I think he is dead,” she said. “I think in Florida.”
Chance, who was nine-weeks-old, was buried several days after his death in a remote, wooded area about 13 miles from his North Port residence. Bury led authorities to his body, located at a gravesite near Elliot Court, on Oct. 15.
Bury’s assistance resulted in a plea deal where she’ll serve 25 years in prison. She pleaded no contest to aggravated manslaughter in January, and as part of the plea deal, will testify against her husband, Joseph Walsh, who is charged with second-degree murder.
The 65 page report included a timeline of events related to the case, including interviews with the couple’s relatives and neighbors, how authorities used surveillance techniques to track down Bury and Walsh in South Carolina, the evidence collected during the investigation and Chance’s final moments.
Walsh’s statements to investigators were redacted in the report.
In an Oct. 6, 2015 interview with detectives, Bury was asked if her son was still alive, despite being presented with information indicating he was killed three weeks earlier.
“Kristen was asked if Chance was dead, to which she said that her son is alive,” the report said. “Kristen then said that she wanted an attorney.”
Life insurance policy
Investigators obtained a cell phone that recorded an argument between Walsh and Bury.
“Kristen is crying and trying to calm Joseph down,” the report said. “Joseph says (part is redacted). Kristen tells Joseph not to hit Chance. Kristen at one point tells Joseph that he is going to break Chance’s neck. The hitting of Chance can be heard on the recording.”
The crying dies down. What happened right before the recording stopped was redacted from the report.
Prior to the argument, the couple discussed the baby’s life insurance policy.
“Please tell me how I would get paid on Chance’s life insurance policy after we murder him,” Bury said, according to the report. “Yeah, they’re going to say thank you for killing your son, here is your life insurance. Have a nice day.”
On Oct. 14, 2015, Bury requested to speak with detectives.
She said Chance was killed on Sept. 17, 2015, one day after the recorded argument, the report said.
“Kristen was asked how she thought Chance died, to which she said that he had a diaper wipe stuck in his throat,” the report said. “Kristen said that Joseph pressed a binky against Chance’s face so hard that he cut Chance’s lip.”
Bury tried to get the wipe out but it was jammed too deep, the report said.
“Joseph tried to remove the wipe with needle nose pliers, but was unsuccessful, cutting Chance’s tongue in the process,” the report said. “Kristen then pried open Chance’s jaw and removed the wipe.”
Chance was still alive at that point, but paramedics were not called.
He died the next day.
“Kristen said that Chance was left in his crib after he died,” the report said. “Kristen said that Chance was left there for about 1 week. Kristen said that at some point Joseph got an idea to wrap Chance in garbage bags because he started to smell really bad. Kristen said that after putting Chance in garbage bags, Joseph put Chance in their laundry basket and then into the closet. Kristen noted that she told Joseph, ‘I don’t understand how it could smell so bad and we’ve got him in so many garbage bags.'”
The couple obtained a broken shovel, then buried him.
“Kristen said that she stood lookout while Joseph buried Chance,” the report said.
Chance’s clothing, along with the shovel, were discarded at the El Jobean Fishing Pier in Port Charlotte, the report said.
Chance Walsh sustained the following injuries, according to an autopsy performed after his body was found:
- Lower jaw bone was broken at the midline
- Sternum was cracked, “caused by blunt force trauma”
- “Greenstick” fracture of the left ribs
- Some vertebrae was missing
A cause of death was not immediately determined.