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Mourners Pay Respects to Slain Oklahoma Girl

April 21, 2006|From the Associated Press

PURCELL, Okla. — About 1,000 people mourned 10-year-old Jamie Rose Bolin on Thursday, struggling to cope with her loss days after her abused body was found in a downstairs neighbor's closet.

Members of Jamie's Girl Scout troop wept during a video presentation chronicling moments in her life, including clowning around with friends.

A photograph of the girl and a large bouquet of flowers were on top of the white casket bearing her body. Country music, including Oklahoma native Carrie Underwood's "Jesus, Take the Wheel," played during the service. Law enforcement officers attended the service and spoke briefly to members of the family.

"I want to tell you today it's OK," Pastor Duane Elmore said at the funeral in the Purcell High School gymnasium. "She is with the Lord."

After the service, the casket was placed in a white hearse for a 60-mile trip to Guthrie for burial on a hilltop overlooking farmland.

Kevin Ray Underwood, 26, is charged with first-degree murder in Jamie's death and is being held without bail. Prosecutors said he killed her, sexually abused the body and had planned to eat her corpse. They will seek the death penalty.

Authorities say Underwood, a grocery store stocker, led authorities to his apartment April 14 after he drew officers' suspicion at a nearby checkpoint.

The girl, who had last been seen two days earlier, was found dead with deep saw marks on her neck, in a large plastic tub sealed with duct tape in his bedroom closet.

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