Police: Maryland man confessed to killing Bethel Park woman during bondage-themed photo shoot in Nevada | TribLIVE.com
Allegheny

Police: Maryland man confessed to killing Bethel Park woman during bondage-themed photo shoot in Nevada

Tom Davidson
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Courtesy of Bethel Park police
Jaime Rae Feden
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John Matthew Chapman

The sheriff of a rural Nevada county plans to send investigators to Pennsylvania to talk with Bethel Park police to build a homicide case against a Maryland man who has confessed to killing Jaime Mae Feden.

Authorities said the man left Feden’s body in the desert about 170 miles north of Las Vegas.

Lincoln County Sheriff Kerry D. Lee said Monday the description of Feden matches the remains of a woman found last month in the desert. A positive identification has not yet been made.

If DNA from Feden’s family matches DNA from the body, then Lee could proceed with homicide charges against John Matthew Chapman, the sheriff said Monday.

Feden, 33, has been missing from her Bethel Park home since the middle of September. In an interview with police Friday, Chapman, 39, of Oakland, Md., confessed that he killed a Feden on Sept. 25 while they were on a bondage-themed photo shoot in the Nevada desert, according to a criminal complaint filed in the case.

Chapman is facing charges of kidnapping, criminal use of a phone and obstruction filed in Allegheny County court in Feden’s case.

There is sufficient evidence to believe the woman found in Nevada is Feden, Bethel Park police wrote in the criminal complaint charging Chapman. According to a missing person’s post by Bethel Park police, Feden is about 4 feet tall and weighs 75 pounds. She has brown hair and brown eyes.

Feden’s family members declined comment when contacted Monday.

Feden was last seen Sept. 15. Her family asked for police help last week.

She and Chapman were romantically involved and had a tumultuous past, Feden’s family members and friends told police, according to the criminal complaint. They told police they hadn’t had contact with Feden for about a month.

Police forced entry into her home and found her phone on the kitchen counter. They also found a backpack with a roll of duct tape and plastic zip ties inside, according to the complaint.

Messages from Feden’s Facebook Messenger account sent to family members didn’t appear to be from her, family members told police, according to the complaint. A number used to communicate with family members was masked using an application that disguised the number, police wrote.

On Thursday, Chapman made several calls to Bethel Park police in an attempt to impede the investigation, according to the complaint.

Early Friday morning, Chapman called and confessed to what happened, police said. Chapman told police that in mid-September he drove Feden from her home to Nevada. Chapman told Feden they were going on vacation, and they were looking at homes they may move to in the area, according to the complaint.

They arrived in Las Vegas on Sept. 23. On Sept. 25, they drove into the desert to participate in a sadomasochistic bondage photo shoot, police said Chapman told them.

Chapman bound Feden’s hands and feet with plastic zip ties to a signpost. He then put duct tape on her mouth and nose until she was unable to breath, Chapman told police, according to the complaint. After Feden was dead, he removed the tape, zip ties and her clothing and left her by the signpost, police said Chapman told them.

Chapman returned to Bethel Park, he told police.

The coroner’s office hasn’t yet identified the woman as Feden, a spokeswoman said Monday.

Chapman is being held without bail in Allegheny County Jail on the local charges. He did not have an attorney listed in online court records.

Tom Davidson is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tom at 724-226-4715, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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