Chicago woman sentenced to up to 50 years in son's 2018 beating death

Jacqueline Rambert of Chicago entered a guilty plea to child endangerment in the death of her 5-year-old son in Davenport. (KWQC)
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - A Chicago woman was sentenced Friday to up to 50 years in prison in connection with the 2018 beating death of her 5-year-old son, Ja’Shawn Bussell.

Court records show Jacqueline Rambert, 26, was sentenced by Judge Thomas Reidel to up to 50 years in prison each on charges of child endangerment-multiple acts and child endangerment resulting in death. The sentences will run at the same time.

She must serve at least 40 percent – or 20 years – of the sentence on the child endangerment resulting in death charge before she is eligible for parole or work release.

She also received credit for time already served in the Scott County Jail, according to court records.

Rambert pleaded guilty to the charges in January. Scott County prosecutors dismissed the more serious charge of first-degree murder at sentencing per the plea agreement.

Her co-defendant and former boyfriend, Tre Henderson, 28, also of Chicago, was convicted last month of first-degree murder and two counts of child endangerment. He will be sentenced April 8 and faces a mandatory sentence of life without parole on the murder charge.

According to testimony at Henderson’s trial, Rambert called 911 the night of April 27, 2018 and said her son was choking and unresponsive in their apartment on Emerald Drive in Davenport.

Bussell was rushed to a local hospital and then airlifted to University Hospitals in Iowa City. He died May 1, 2018, from complications due to blunt-force injuries to his head.

Rambert testified at trial that Henderson told her he beat the boy with a belt after he urinated and soiled himself on April 20, 2018.

Two days later, she was at work when Henderson brought Bussell to her workplace and said he fell off the kitchen counter.

Over the next several days, the boy was vomiting and barely eating, Rambert said.

She admitted that she punched the boy in his side, breaking his ribs, at one point because she was frustrated and nervous when he would not stop biting his lip.

Henderson testified that he never struck the boy or hit him with a belt.

He also denied causing Bussell’s fatal injury and said he never saw Rambert hit the boy.