Letters to family show Steven Powell still defiant behind bars

Published: Wednesday, May 22 2013 6:20 p.m. MDT

Steven Powell, seen In this Aug. 19, 2011, photo, is expected to be released from prison within a month. Newly-released letters he has written from prison show he is still distrustful of law enforcement and is plotting a wrongful death lawsuit for the death of his son, Josh Powell.

Rick Egan, AP

WEST VALLEY CITY — After spending a year behind bars, Steven Powell's feelings toward Chuck Cox, the West Valley Police Department, and the LDS Church apparently remain sour.

Among the tens of thousands of pages of information from the Susan Cox Powell investigation released by West Valley police on Monday, were letters written from Steven Powell to his daughter Alina and son Michael during the time he's been incarcerated.

A review of some of the letters shows that the patriarch of the Powell family, who was convicted by a Tacoma jury on 14 counts of voyeurism in May of 2012 and sentenced to prison, reveals his distrust of law enforcement and his extremely negative feelings for Chuck Cox. The letters also show that he was plotting a wrongful death lawsuit against law enforcement for the death of his son, Josh Powell, and has been busy writing a novel with his own beliefs about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Powell wrote two letters dated Dec. 16, 2012, to his daughter Alina, and to his son Michael Powell. In the letter to his son, Steven Powell said "law enforcement is out of control," and he made a point of noting that he believes the majority of officers with West Valley police and the FBI are LDS.

"What the state has done to me is 100 percent illegal," he wrote.

Powell wrote that he believes he will have a "strong wrongful death suit" once he gets out prison — which could be within the next month. He also wants to find a "competent" appeals attorney so his criminal conviction can be overturned.

"The egg flowing down the faces of the government will be massive, I believe. They must be held accountable!!!," Powell wrote. "I want them to think twice next time they decide to attack an innocent family."

Letter to Alina

A letter to Alina Powell with the same date repeats many of the same topics, while also calling his son Josh Powell a "devoted father."

"These government agencies will ultimately have to come clean," Steven Powell wrote. "There is a disproportionate number of Mormons in the FBI because that agency favors agents who are comfortable with situation ethics."

Powell, who both police and prosecutors noted in numerous documents, pictures and videos had a deep and bizarre obsession with his missing daughter-in-law Susan Cox Powell, ended the letter on an odd tangent discussing many of the woman's alleged sexual experiences, as well as expressing his dislike for her father, Chuck Cox.

In a letter dated two days later to Michael Powell, Steven wrote that Alina had told him it might be best if he didn't move back into his old house in Puyallup, Wash., when he is released from prison.

"She would prefer somewhere other than our house to live," Steven Powell wrote. His daughter's reasons were for safety, and because she didn't want the house "to be a lightning rod for media."

"Frankly, I am not anxious to go back to that house/neighborhood, either," Steven Powell wrote.

Powell also wrote to his son about how the family was struggling financially and how Alina had been making the house payments using money from his own life insurance and retirement policies, as well as credit cards to subsidize the payments. He said Alina was looking to get a job at that point.

He also made reference to a book he's apparently been writing while in prison, saying he had finished 300 pages of a book about LDS Church founder Joseph Smith.

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