Nearly 20 years after Redlands teen Kelly Bullwinkle was fatally shot and buried in a shallow grave in a local canyon by two of her closest friends, the legacy of her brutal and calculated killing lives on.

The murder of the 18-year-old Crafton Hills College freshman made national headlines because of its sensational nature and the Gothic subculture in which Bullwinkle and her killers, Damien Matthew Guerrero and Kinzie Gene Noordman, immersed themselves.

Kinzie Noordman, 20, sits in a San Bernardino Superior Court, in Redlands December 16, 2003 during a pre-trial hearing. Noordman was charged with the September 13, 2003 murder of Kelly Bullwinkle. (Staff file photo/The Sun)
Kinzie Noordman, 20, sits in a San Bernardino Superior Court, in Redlands on Dec.16, 2003, during a pretrial hearing. Noordman was charged with the Sept. 13, 2003, murder of Kelly Bullwinkle. (Staff file photo/The Sun)

The Bullwinkle murder case has been popular on television, spawning several episodes on true crime shows and a Lifetime movie called “I Killed my BFF.

On Monday, March 27, a new one gets added to the list. “Goth Girl Gone,” a new episode on Investigation Discovery’s “Mean Girl Murders” series of true crime exploits, airs at 9 p.m.

“The gravity of this crime, and the waste of a promising life left unlived, make it hard to forget,” said the producers of “Mean Girl Murders” in an email. “It’s also a story so many of us can relate to — as young people we’ve felt insecure in friendships, or tried too hard, or been made to feel inadequate. But then we grow up. That’s not how this story ended.”

Bullwinkle was 18 when she was lured into Live Oak Canyon, which divides the cities of Redlands and Moreno Valley, in September 2003 by Guerrero, 19, and Noordman, 20. There, Guerrero and Noordman each shot Bullwinkle once in the head, then buried her in a shallow grave.

Guerrero, now 38, and Noordman, now 39, drove Bullwinkle’s car to Ontario Mills Mall, where they abandoned it and then went to dinner and a movie, holding onto their receipts to establish an alibi.

A jury came close to convicting Guerrero in March 2005, but deadlocked on a first-degree murder verdict. Noordman, however, was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to 45 years in prison. The two were tried together, but had separate juries. Guerrero averted a second trial by pleading guilty in 2008 to second-degree murder and was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison.

In January, Guerrero was granted parole. But he remains incarcerated pending a review by the Board of Parole Hearings for any possible errors in fact and approval by Gov. Gavin Newsom, said Dana Simas, a spokesperson for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

Guerrero has been incarcerated at Chuckawalla Valley State Prison in Blythe since September 2008; Noordman has been housed at the California Institution for Women in Chino since May 2005.

Although Guerrero played a key role in Bullwinkle’s death, “Mean Girl Murders” producers said “the DNA of a Mean Girl Murders story is in the female dynamics — why women become friends, how they treat each other, and how those relationships can go so wrong, and devolve into a tragic crime.”

“By many accounts, Kinzie thought of Kelly as her best friend.  And yet, she treated her poorly in life, and is responsible for her death. It was Kinzie who made the plans to lure Kelly out that night, and Kinzie who fired the fatal shot. She is central to the story, from beginning to tragic end,” “Mean Girl Murders” producers said in the email.

The episode, which was filmed from Nov. 6 to Nov. 8, 2022, was shot at key locations in Redlands, including Bakers fast-food restaurant, Redlands East Valley High School, and the neighborhoods where the teens lived at the time of the killing. Interviews were filmed in Loma Linda.

California

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