An aspiring actor from Canyon Country, arrested last week for rape and who died of a gunshot wound to the head which he inflicted on himself while streaming the act live on Facebook, had been troubled over an ongoing custody battle.
Frederick Jay Bowdy, 33, was arrested a week ago on suspicion of spousal rape by deputies of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station, arrest records maintained by the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department’s Inmate Information Center.
The Texas-born actor Bowdy leaves behind six children, including two from a previous marriage.
His manager, Sean Kurzweil, told The Signal Friday that Bowdy had been embroiled in a custody battle over one of his children still in Texas.
“He was struggling with this custody situation,” Kurzweil said. “It weighed heavily on his mind.”
Despite, the struggle Bowdy remained professional, going to auditions and participating in current TV productions, he said
Kurzweil was shocked and horrified, he said, to learn his client not only killed himself but had made it public by posting it on Facebook.
“It was disturbing in so many ways,” he said.
“This is something symptomatic of the modern era,” he said. “With this brand new technology we live out our lives way too much on social media. I don’t understand it.”
On Friday, Kurzweil received a collect call from jail, it was from Jay Bowdy, he said.
Then, early Monday morning, Kurzweil was woken by another phone call, he said. This time the caller was a friend of Bowdy’s calling from Texas.
“Your client Jay Bowdy is on Facebook threatening suicide,” Kurzweil said. “I said ‘What?’ and I was still wiping the sleep out of my eyes.”
Kurzweil and others called officers of the Los Angeles Police Department about the live Facebook feed, he said.
The coroner’s office received a call from LAPD on Monday at 6:33 a.m. that Bowdy was found dead in a car parked on Cumpston Street just east of Fulcher Avenue in North Hollywood.
Kurzweil said the horrifying incident had unfolded before the sun was up.
“You could see his profile so you got a sense of what was happening in silhouette,” Kurzweil said. “Thank God it was not a clear image. But, you could hear the gun jamming a couple of times.”
When LAPD officers arrived at Bowdy’s car, their conversations were audible on the Facebook feed, Kurzweil said.
An LAPD officer contacted Friday referred all comment about the case to the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Department.
“Bowdy died of a gunshot wound to the head. It was found to be a suicide,” coroner spokesman Lt. David said.
Bowdy, who acted in four projects last year including a TV movie, TV mini-series and TV documentary, was currently involved in the filming of two other projects, according to the IMDB website which chronicles film industry production.
The coroner’s office received a call from the Los Angeles Police Department at 6:33 a.m. Monday about Bowdy being found in a car parked on Cumpston Street just east of Fulcher Avenue, according to the coroner.
Bowdy is credited on the IMDB website as having acted in nine productions since 2014.
“He was professional, and he had a lot of potential,” Kurzweil said.
on Twitter @jamesarthurholt