Ex-Boyfriend Arrested in Tyler, Confesses To Deaths of Lisa and Jayden Underwood - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

02/22/05 - Tyler

Ex-Boyfriend Arrested in Tyler, Confesses To Deaths of Lisa and Jayden Underwood

by Morgan Palmer

 Two bodies have now been found near a Denton County pond, where police had been searching for Lisa Underwood, and her seven-year-old son Jayden.

Lisa and Jayden disappeared Saturday and were reported missing after Lisa failed to show up for her baby shower.  Lisa was seven months pregnant. 

Lisa's ex-boyfriend Stephen Barbee was arrested in Tyler Tuesday morning.  He was taken into custody by Ft. Worth Police and was transported to Tarrant County.  He has now confessed to killing both the mother and child, and led police to the crime scene where the bodies were found in a shallow grave.

An arrest warrant affidavit obtained by KLTV details Barbee's alleged whereabouts and actions over the weekend. 

Police say he was in East Texas at a Rusk County jobsite. He co-owned a Metroplex tree clearing service with a man by the name of Ron Dodd.

Dodd gave Barbee a ride, apparently to visit Lisa Underwood at her Ft. Worth home Saturday morning.  In the arrest warrant affidavit, Barbee told Dodd afterward, "he had visited a female friend who he had made pregnant and said 'I just can't do it.'" Dodd assumed Barbee meant he was going to end the relationship with the woman.

Later, after Dodd met Barbee who was driving an SUV, the affidavit states, "Dodd opened the hatchback of a blue SUV [Barbee was driving] and observed the bodies of a female and male child."

That SUV is believed to have been Lisa Underwood's -- found abandoned in Denton County Monday.  Dodd told police that, later, Barbee admitted to killing Lisa after a heated argument.

He punched her in the nose, making her bleed.  Then, he suffocated her. 

The most heartbreaking detail follows.

The affidavit says "Sometime during the fight... the 7-year-old son entered the living room screaming. Barbee said he placed his hand over the child's mouth and nose and suffocated him to death."

Barbee is in jail in Tarrant County on a $2 million bond.

Fort Worth Police arrested Barbee at the Tyler Police Department early Tuesday morning on a capital murder warrant.   Barbee was interviewed at Tyler's police headquarters before he was arrested.  Barbee was held in the Smith County Jail overnight, then transferred to Fort Worth after daybreak.

The arrest occured after police conducted an overnight raid on a home in Ft. Worth.  Investigators said they did find the evidence they were seeking, but would not say what that evidence was.

A sport utility vehicle belonging to the pregnant woman was found in a creek Monday, two days after a pool of blood was found in her home.

Officers on horseback and using dogs concentrated the search in a rural area of Denton, about 30 miles northeast of Fort Worth, after a landowner found the SUV belonging to Lisa Underwood and her son, Jayden. The vehicle was nose down and partly submerged in a creek.

A statewide Amber Alert was issued after the woman failed to show up for her baby shower Saturday, and the alert was expanded to New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.  It was cancelled Tuesday morning after police began searching the Denton County field where the bodies were found.

Police would not give details of what they found at Underwood's Fort Worth home, but a police report said relatives checking her house Saturday found a large pool of blood on the living room floor.

There were no signs of forced entry, Lt. Gene Jones said.

Underwood, 34, is not married, Jones said. He said Jayden's father was among those being contacted by police, but he added that investigators had not narrowed in on any other particular suspect.

Underwood is a co-owner of Boopa's Bagel Deli with Holly Pils, who said she last spoke with Underwood on Friday night.

"There's no one I know of that might want to do her harm," Pils said.

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