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Courthouse outburst sends man back to cell

By Josh Rabe Published: April 20, 2006
PURCELL - A man who burst into the McClain County Courthouse with a rope and bucket, shouting that another man charged in the death of a 10-year-old girl should be hanged, was in jail himself about two weeks ago.

And now, he's in jail again.

Bruce Steven Schwartz, 48, of Elmore City was released March 31 from the Garvin County jail on his own recognizance, records show.

He had been arrested on a complaint of auto theft and is accused of taking a pickup that belonged to a local attorney without the owner's permission.

Schwartz was jailed Monday after an outburst during Kevin Underwood's arraignment on a first-degree murder charge. Authorities have accused Underwood of killing his neighbor, Jamie Rose Bolin, whose body was recovered from his Purcell apartment.

Schwartz was being held in lieu of $1,000 bail Wednesday in a McClain County cell far from Underwood's, Sheriff Don Hewett said.

Previous encounters with police may have left Schwartz with little confidence the justice system would work for Bolin's family, said Schwartz's friend, Curtis Dobson Jr. of Maysville.

"I guess he figured the law was just going to let him go," Dobson said of Underwood.

Schwartz had been on probation after a 2004 assault conviction for punching his cousin and chasing him with a pipe. He was charged in March with the pickup theft and for filing a false police report after he reporting several items he left at Dobson's house were stolen.

Dobson said both charges stem from a misunderstanding with Schwartz, who "can be difficult to understand at times."

A traffic accident in 2001 killed Schwartz's father, Wyman, and left Schwartz in a coma, Dobson said.

"He gets off-the-wall thoughts sometimes. He doesn't remember where he is, or what he is there for," said sheriff's deputy Jim Mullett, who arrested Schwartz after discovering welding equipment he had reported stolen inside a pickup parked near Dobson's home.

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