BOLIVAR, Mo. – A 43-year-old woman from Aldrich has been charged with second-degree murder and elder abuse in connection with the death of her disabled son last week near Morrisville.
Kimberly R. Lightwine is accused in the death of 19-year-old Austin Anderson. His death is attributed to being left without essential medication in a farm field on a hot, humid day last week. Elder abuse in Missouri law can include abuse of any adult with a disability as defined by law.
A probable cause statement filed in the case states that an autopsy on Anderson’s body last week showed that the man suffered from brain swelling consistent with dehydration and the possibility of his body going into shock from lack of medication.
The man had on collapsed and shriveled adrenal gland and required hydrocortisone to compensate for this condition. Extended exposure to the elements on a hot day also was cited as a cause of death.
Lightwine, who was found lying in grass near her son’s body, made statements to law officers at the scene that she had killed her son, according to the probable cause statements.
Anderson’s father told investigators that his son was not able to walk long distances, was not able to care for himself and required constant care, including aid in eating, drinking and taking essential medications.
Lightwine told investigators she was high on drugs and had taken her son to the field, had pushed him through several fences to reach the area where he was found and had broken a leg in the process, court documents state.
She was taken to a hospital after her arrest and is not yet listed among inmates at the Polk County Jail, the sheriff’s office said.