Defense wants statement thrown out in murder trial

Wednesday, January 23rd 2008, 8:48 pm
By: News 9

By Gan Mathews, NEWS 9

The man accused of murdering a 10-year-old girl is heading to trial but attorneys want Kevin Underwood's incriminating statements thrown out.

After 10-year-old Jamie Rose Bolin was reported missing in April 2006, FBI agents say they got verbal permission from Underwood to search his Purcell apartment. According to an affidavit, before the agents searched a large plastic tub, Underwood told them:

"She's in there, I chopped her up."

The defense wants the result of the search thrown out. News 9's legal analyst Irven Box doubts that will happen.

"If he orally said, come on in, you can search and the question is, was he in custody then, but even if he was in custody and he orally said you can come in and search, I think that is probably going to be sufficient," Box said.

Kevin Underwood's trial was moved from McClain County to Cleveland County because of pre-trial publicity.

The state will be seeking the death penalty. That's why his court-appointed attorneys are leaving no stone unturned to suppress the most damning evidence against him.

This week Underwood's attorneys have questioned FBI agents and Purcell detectives about incriminating statements Underwood allegedly made after asking to see a lawyer. The FBI says Underwood made those statements voluntarily, without coaxing.

Judge Candice Blaylock will rule on the admissibility of all this evidence soon, but not before she hears testimony from former Purcell Police Chief David Tompkins.

Tompkins first told the world that Underwood killed the Bolin girl as part of a cannibalistic plot.