Death Row Inmate Claimed Cannibalistic Fantasies Caused Him To Kidnap, Kill Neighbor Girl
Police in Oklahoma found 10-year-old Jamie Rose Bolin dead in a plastic bin in Kevin Ray Underwood’s bedroom.
A 10-year-old girl missing for days in Oklahoma was killed by a neighbor man, who authorities said planned out her horrific kidnapping, rape, torture and murder.
On April 14, 2006, police in Purcell located the remains of Jamie Rose Bolin inside a large plastic storage bin that was taped shut and in the bedroom closet of 26-year-old Kevin Ray Underwood. He lived in the same apartment complex as the young victim and her father.
Police identified Underwood as a suspect after they stopped him at a checkpoint near the crime scene and he caught their attention.
“He was very quiet ... comes from a nice family,” Tim Kuykendall, then the district attorney for McClain County, told CNN at the time. “Nothing in his background that we know of would have indicated that he could have done this. He was the guy next door.”
Underwood, however, turned out to be an especially dangerous man next door who harbored disturbing secret fantasies. According to officials, the grocery store employee consented to a search of his apartment, and detectives seized evidence that included a decorative dagger, hacksaw, meat tenderizer, barbecue skewers, and a wooden cutting board.
They also discovered Bolin’s dismantled bicycle and a documentary on videotape about serial killers.
Former Purcell Police Chief David Tompkins said investigators believe the fifth grader’s slaying was “well planned out” and Underwood initially may have been targeting a woman and a 5-year-old boy but selected the little girl when she happened to show up at his apartment.
Underwood and Bolin were acquaintances and had interacted before, including the night prior to the child’s murder when she used his phone to order pizza, according to police.
The night of Bolin’s murder, the district attorney said Underwood struck the girl multiple times in the head with the cutting board and then suffocated her. “She pled for her life,” Kuykendall said. “The first thing out of her mouth when he first hit her was, ‘I'm sorry.’”
An autopsy determined the little girl died from asphyxiation and blunt-force trauma to the head, and the district attorney said injuries showed there was a “serious attempt to cut the head off the body.”
In a videotaped confession, Underwood admitted he harbored cannibalistic fantasies when he murdered Bolin and then sexually assaulted her body. He claimed he was unable to go through with his plan to eat her remains, The Oklahoman reported.
“I'm going to burn in hell,” Underwood told an FBI agent at one point, according to the publication.
During the interview, the killer noted his obsession “started off as cannibalism” and he “wanted to know what it tasted like, just the thought of eating someone, and it was appealing” to him, The Norman Transcript reported.
“But then it kept kind of evolving from there ’cause I am, you know, sexually frustrated. I haven’t had sex in four years,” Underwood said.
He claimed to agents that Bolin became his victim by chance, and he appeared to downplay his involvement in luring her to her death. “She was a very trusting kid that if it hadn’t been me, it coulda ended up being someone else, ’cause, like I said, she just kinda wandered into my apartment,” he said. “I didn’t, you know, force her in there or even ask her in.”
After killing Bolin, Underwood said he was “disgusted.”
“I was like, God, this mess. … I guess I was already pretty upset, you know; I can’t believe this, I wish I hadn’t did it, you know, I wish I could take it back,” he told agents.
In February 2008, a jury deliberated for 23 minutes before they found Underwood guilty of first-degree murder. He was sentenced to death.
Over eight years later, in July 2016, a federal judge rejected Underwood’s argument he was ineligible for the death penalty because he had Asperger’s syndrome and battled mental illness (his defense attorneys had told jurors in 2008 that Underwood was diagnosed with schizotypal personality disorder.) The judge noted in his ruling that Bolin’s murder was “especially heinous, atrocious or cruel.”
Underwood, now 43, remains locked up at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester, Pittsburg County, Oklahoma.
He is currently scheduled to be executed on December 7, 2023.
For more on this case, stream Signs of a Psychopath: “I Dug A Hole And Said A Prayer” on discovery+.