Steven Powell called in sick the day after his daughter-in-law was reported missing

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  • GneissRocks Washington, UT
    April 5, 2012 2:58 p.m.

    @Furry1993 "To convict someone, that PROOF is needed. Yes, Josh behaved strangely but that is proof of nothing aside from the fact that he behaved strangely. Based on the evidence available to the public at this time, there is nothing to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that (1) Susan Powell is dead and, if she is, (2) how that death occured or (3) who killed her."

    With that sort of reasoning then you cannot positivly say that Josh killed his two sons and then set the house on fire, because nobody was watching the back door to the house where theoretically someone could have run out without having been seen after he axed the boys and knocked Josh unconscious before lighting the gasoline fire that eventually took all their lives.

  • LivinLarge Bountiful, UT
    April 5, 2012 12:25 p.m.

    I am stunned that two individuals, namely Josh and Stephen Powell could embrace so much evil. "Like father, like son" appears to be true in this instance. My heartfelt sympathies go out to close family members and friends of Susan's family who are sympathetic to Susan's case.

  • Furry1993 Clearfield, UT
    April 5, 2012 12:07 p.m.

    eastcoastcoug, I agree that nothing about a body, in and of itself, would show who killed him/her. It would, however, prove that s/he is in fact dead. To date there is no evidence showing beyond reasonable doubt that Susan Powell is dead. People can speculate all they want, and be "certain" in their minds and hearts that she is dead, but there is no real PROOF that she is dead. To convict someone, that PROOF is needed. Yes, Josh behaved strangely but that is proof of nothing aside from the fact that he behaved strangely. Based on the evidence available to the public at this time, there is nothing to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that (1) Susan Powell is dead and, if she is, (2) how that death occured or (3) who killed her.

    Everything screams guilt, but that is not enough. "Everything screaming guilt" is not enough to prove beyond a reasonable doubt what happened, which level of proof is necessary to convict.

    I'm just glad that Heavenly Father has a more reliable method of proving one's worth.

  • GneissRocks Washington, UT
    April 5, 2012 11:26 a.m.

    The distance one way from SLC, UT to Puyallup, WA is a little over 800 miles.

    What's the big mystery here? It's doesn't take brain science, rocket surgery, or even long division to see that Josh called Steven Powell and told the old man that he'd murdered Susan and needed help getting rid of the body.

    Steven Powell takes two days off work and meets Josh halfway between SLC, UT and Puyallup, WA where the dead wife was handed over to Steven Powell, who took her body and hid it in a place where she'll most likely never be found.

    So has anyone investigated Steven Powell's cell phone records during that time to see where his calls were originating from?

  • SLC Grandma Salt Lake City, UT
    April 5, 2012 9:51 a.m.

    Apart from all the reasons why or why not in regard to the terrible murders, I feel that those sweet little boys would still be alive IF their supervised visitations with their father had been held in open, neutral territory, not Josh's home - there certainly was enough evidence to confirm that such an unhealthy, unstable environment was not safe for those little kids.

  • morpunkt Glendora, CA
    April 5, 2012 9:26 a.m.

    I think it would make a good research study, to investigate the beginnings of this vile family tradition. Who did Steven Powell learn it from? Just food for thought.

  • oldschool Farmington, UT
    April 5, 2012 9:05 a.m.

    I used to work in the mountains away from town a great deal. To keep myself busy in the evenings, I would read non-fiction books that I would buy at the last store before hitting the back roads. Usually the book I ended up reading was a murder book, often one written by Anne Rule. Over the years I ended up reading countless books about various murders, and one thing I noticed was how often the police had proved to be incompetent. It's understandable much of the time because some of these murders were committed in small towns where the police force had never investigated a murder or very rarely did so. But WVC has had many murders, and I would expect the detectives there to be more competent. Still, I wonder if they called all the service stations within 400 miles of WVC to have them check their security videos for Josh's and Steve's vehicles. Or whether they tracked down Steve's credit card purchases to see if he met up with Josh somewhere in Nevada. Why did it take so long for WVC to seize the computers? Anyway, I wonder.

  • morpunkt Glendora, CA
    April 5, 2012 12:28 a.m.

    I think it's time to do a psychosexual evaluation on this suspect.

  • wer South Jordan, UT
    April 5, 2012 12:24 a.m.

    As more information comes to light, it just shows how inept the entire law enforcement and DA's offices were during this ordeal. It's time for some people to find employment elsewhere.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    April 4, 2012 11:47 p.m.

    When I see the refusal to face reality by some of these posters it becomes more and more clear to me why there are some people who are still willing to vote for Barak Obama.

    It is obvious to ANYONE with eyes to see that Josh Powell killed his wife. Steven Powell's own daughter says she is "certain" he knows what happened and that she wouldn't be surprised if he actually planned to whole thing. She knows both of them and what they are/were capable of. We KNOW Josh was capable for murder because he murdered his two boys.

    Every action Josh and Steven have taken screams guilt. Will you people pull your heads out and face reality?

  • eastcoastcoug Danbury, CT
    April 4, 2012 10:58 p.m.

    Why is the news media more excited about this than the WV Police Department?? Where was all this information 2 years ago? Why was Josh allowed to go free? Nothing about finding a body would establish who did it. Josh acted strangely and hid from the police from the beginning. Taking the SIM cards was enough to at least charge him with tampering with evidence. In the end he murdered his boys to keep them quiet and take revenge on the Cox family. What more do we need?

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 4, 2012 10:53 p.m.


    Just evil.

    The apple did not fall far from the tree in this case.

    An innocent woman and two kids, murdered, but we may never be able to prove it and obtain a conviction. Sometimes evil wins. At least here on earth.

  • OneAmerican Idaho Falls, ID
    April 4, 2012 10:25 p.m.


    In addition to your list, you missed that fact that not only did Josh Powell take the SIM card out of his phone, the SIM card was missing from his wife's phone, as well as hints from statements of the two boys, whose lives also ended at the hands of their father. The DA didn't want to take the chance of arresting Powell and losing the case. Only 12 jurors stood between the evidence and a conviction, and chances were VERY good that will all the circumstantial evidence, in spite of no body, a jury could find beyond a reasonable doubt that Josh Powell was guilty. Many men and women sit in prison today who have been convicted on weaker evidence that the police have in this case. The police force and DA's office need to take a course on self confidence and appropriates assertiveness.

  • delasalle Sandy, UT
    April 4, 2012 10:05 p.m.

    Calling in sick seems to be irrelevant. His daughter in law is missing. That would be enough for me to call in sick for a month if I received that type of news. Not saying he's innocent, just that the time off doesn't mean much.

  • Chase Saint George, UT
    April 4, 2012 10:04 p.m.

    @ Jack-P

    Do you have pictures of your son's wife in her underwear?
    If your car was turned over to authorities would you need to drive 800 miles in 48 hours.
    Would you have any usual business in Tremontton?
    Would you need to remove the SIM card before turning your phone over?
    Would your wife's blood be on the tile floor?
    Would the carpet be wet?
    Would you have your wife's cell phone and be unable to explain why you did?
    Would you take your kids camping in a blizzard?

    The answer is no. The more peculiar the circumstances, the likelihood that reasonable suspicion would be validated. This is why Josh was a person of interest. That's a nice way of saying, "We're on to you but we can't produce a body".

    While I appreciate you objective and nonjudgmental disposition, the above listed circumstances constitute suspicious behavior and circumstances and are subject to scrutiny and investigation.

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    April 4, 2012 9:18 p.m.

    What is disturbing is that this is considered relevant at all to Susan Powells disappearance. People call in "sick" all the time, and it is usually on a Monday, especially if one gets troubling news that a relative is missing. Before any such data points can be meaningfully tied together to make them into a "clue", there has to be some credible MOTIVE established for either or both Josh Powell and Steven Powell.

    What is the motive?

    Can't be life insurance, because death would have to be established for Josh to collect on life insurance proceeds. Susan's disappearance would not work for that.

    Domestic violence? Could be, but how does that give any kind of motive to Steven, and why would he or Josh pre-meditate killing Susan when Josh could have just divorced her?

    What other motives have the WVC Police come up with? If they have not thought about motive, then they are completely incompetent. That is crime investigation 101.

  • chubbuckidahocougfan Chubbuck, Idaho
    April 4, 2012 7:38 p.m.

    I haven't heard any information whether the rental car was searched for forensic evidence for hair fibers, blood, DNA, etc. of Susan Powell. 800 miles in a couple of days is alot of miles to put on a vehicle. My guess is he told the police where he was camping that night and that may have been the spot where he originally disposed of Susan's body and then he returned to the place with the rental car where the body was and disposed of it elsewhere so it would be never found again or itleast very difficult to ever come across again.

    All I know from this entire debacle of an investigation is that if you want to get away with murder even if your are not very smart like Powell was with the amount of evidence and guilt he left behind then just go reside in West Valley City, UT.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    April 4, 2012 6:52 p.m.

    Millions of people called off at that time. There could have even been others who did who knew this family. It is absolutely worth a detective's time to look into such a fact, but for the rest of us its circumstantial and not worth talking about.

    Furthermore, publishing this certainly doesn't do well for this mans safety when half the country already hates him enough as it is. If he's innocent here and something happened to him, I would want to hold the media partially accountable for any wrong doing. Why? Because 'innocent until proven guilty' is a just process. When you start publishing unnecessary information that will knowingly be interpreted wrongfully by the masses, then while it isn't libel- it's as close as the D.N. could possibly step in that direction.

    I don't have any reason to like this guy, but I'm not so sure that publishing this is the right thing to do either. I'm not accusing anyone, but questioning the responsibility of publishing this. Am I wrong? How? Cause so far this sure seems more problematic than not.

  • Jack-P West Valley, UT
    April 4, 2012 6:04 p.m.

    I know we all want something to hang our hats on, and there may be something there, but if my son's wife went missing I'd probably take a couple of days (or more) off work also. Unless someone knows what he did during those two days then that's as far as you can go with this "clue".

    If I turned my car over to the police I would probably need to rent one. If I gave them my cell phone I'd probably activate another one.

  • EnglishAlan Rugeley, Staffs
    April 4, 2012 4:34 p.m.

    Mr Powell can hide from the Police all he wants. One day he and his son will not be able to hide any misdeeds. They will face the Supreme Judge, and will face any consequencesensuing from any misdeeds. What a sad outcome that could be for them. Having grandchildren myself, I would not be able to live with their loss if I had been capable of taking steps to avoid any possibility of any harm coming to them.

    The Cox Family will, in contrast, have the joy of a reunion with their daughter and grandsons, and can have that family relationship forever.

    I realise that the evidence thus far is only circumstantial, but it seems to be growing with every piece of evidence that is revealed. Bloodstains, a washed couch, the phone calls, the mileage on the car, the emptying of the bank account, the testimony of the little son that his mother "went on their camping trip," but didn't come home, sick leave, etc, etc. It certainly looks as though the Powell's are not squeaky clean to say the least.

  • regis Salt Lake City, UT
    April 4, 2012 4:06 p.m.

    How appropriate that Mr. Powell took "sick" leave to help his son in this incredibly sick endeavor.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    April 4, 2012 3:41 p.m.

    I believe authorities would be wise to offer a deal to Steven Powell if he will talk. They've kind of got him over a barrel and if they offer him a better deal for his own case, he might be willing to tell them something.

    Of course, if he did plan the whole thing and take an active role in her murder, he might never talk.

    This is all so horrible.