On October 5, 2019, an unidentifiable dead body was found near Kane Springs Road, approximately 1 mile from US 93 in Lincoln County, Nevada. The body was ultimately identified through dental records as being Jaime Rae Feden. Ms. Feden had been reported as a missing person in November 2019 in Bethel Park, Pennsylvania. Through its investigation, the Bethel Park Police Department arrested John Matthew Chapman on November 15, 2019, on charges related to Ms. Feden’s disappearance. Mr. Chapman agreed to speak to police and subsequently admitted that he had traveled with Ms. Feden from Pennsylvania to Nevada in September 2019 and murdered her in Lincoln County at the location where the body was recovered.
On February 20, 2020, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Nevada filed a Complaint against John Matthew Chapman in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada alleging one crime:
- Kidnapping Resulting in Death, a violation of 18 U.S.C. 1201(a)(1).
Pursuant to the filing in federal court, Mr. Chapman is currently in the process of being extradited back to Las Vegas, Nevada to answer the federal kidnapping charge. If convicted of the federal kidnapping charge, Mr. Chapman will be punished by death or life in prison. The U.S. Attorney’s Office did not charge Mr. Chapman with murder in the federal court based on the conclusion from the joint investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office that Ms. Feden’s murder did not occur on federal land, but on private land in Lincoln County, Nevada.
The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office has submitted a report on the investigation of this case to the Lincoln County District Attorney’s Office and has recommended that charges be filed against John Matthew Chapman. Based on its review and investigation, the Lincoln County District Attorney’s Office will be filing, at a minimum, the following charges against John Matthew Chapman on behalf of the State of Nevada:
- Murder of a Vulnerable Person, a Category A Felony in violation of
NRS 200.030 and NRS 193.167 2. First Degree Kidnapping of a Vulnerable Person, a Category A Felony in violation of NRS 200.310, 200.320 and 193.167
These state/local charges carry maximum penalties of death or life in prison, similar to the maximum penalties in Mr. Chapman’s federal kidnapping charge.
After consultation with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Lincoln County District Attorney Dylan Frehner has decided to delay filing a criminal complaint on the state/local charges against Mr. Chapman. The delay in filing the state/local charges will ensure that the federal and state proceedings do not overlap and cause confusion. Further, open murder cases are time-intensive and expensive, and Lincoln County’s limited resources will be best utilized by trailing the federal case. Nevada has an open statute of limitations on murder and a 3-year statute of limitations on kidnapping, which will allow time to ascertain how the federal case is proceeding before filing the state/local charges.