Colin Egglesfield plays Randy Roth in "A Rose for Her Grave." File Photo by David Silpa/UPI |
LOS ANGELES, Feb. 17 (UPI) --
Colin Egglesfield said he struggled to understand convicted murderer Randy Roth, whom he plays in
A Rose for Her Grave: The Randy Roth Story
, premiering Saturday at 8 p.m. EST on Lifetime.
"He could just easily dispose of two of his wives, and then just move on and act as if nothing ever happened," Egglesfield said on a recent Zoom panel, adding that Randy displayed "the absolute lack of feeling or empathy."
The film depicts Randy's courtship of Cindy Baumgartner (Laura Ramsey), his fourth wife. Cindy drowned in 1991 and Randy was convicted of her murder in 1992.
Randy's second wife, Janis, died in 1981. She fell to her death on a hiking trip, but Randy never faced trial for her death.
Egglesfield did not meet Randy, who is serving 50 years for murder and an additional year for two counts of theft. Egglesfield said that research led him to infer that Randy grew up in an unhealthy environment.
"He never had much nurturing," Egglesfield said. "It just seemed like he was incredibly narcissistic. Anything and everything he did was calculated to how he could gain, whatever it was that he wanted for himself."
The film shows how Randy initially swept Cindy off her feet. Roth's son asked Cindy out for him.
Cindy had been grieving the death of her first husband. Ramsey said she could understand how she might overlook warning signs, like Randy strangling her in bed as depicted in the film.
"You're almost in denial because you wanted this fairy tale thing," Ramsey said. "You'll do anything to try to keep it going and keep it together."
Cindy's roommate, Lori Baker, alerted authorities to some of Randy's suspicious behavior, like clearing out Cindy's safe deposit box days after her death. Chrishell Stause plays Lori in the film.
Lori also found a copy of Cindy's will, which assigned Lori custody of her son. In the film, Lori tries to warn Cindy about Randy's erratic and violent mood swings.
The film shows Randy attempt to keep Lori out of Cindy's life, which Stause said should have been a red flag.
"If somebody really loves you, they'd love that you have that support system," Stause said.
Another red flag, Stause said, was that Randy became more demanding of Cindy's appearance.
"He starts telling her what to wear," he said. "Of course, it always seems to start out like, 'Oh, I really like this,' but then ends up turning into he was very controlling of how her [finger]nails were."
Egglesfield said he agreed with his co-stars that Randy exhibited red flags that his violence would escalate, adding that he hopes that portraying his and Cindy's story can help "shine a light on how hopefully people can see these warning flags before they get into similar situations."