Josh Powell, husband of missing Utah mom Susan Powell, has killed himself and his two sons in what authorities term a double homicide and suicide. The police believe that the explosion was caused by a gas leak set purposely by Powell.
We believe that he killed his kids and himself,” said Sgt. Ed Troyer, spokesman for the Pierce County’s Sheriff’s Department.
Powell, who was living in Puyallup, Washington, is reported to have sent a short email to his attorney before causing the home explosion. The email just says “I’m sorry. Goodbye.”
Powell was a suspect in the 2009 disappearance of his wife, Susan Cox-Powell and had been under intense media scrutiny from the police, media and the public.
The trigger for Powell’s suicidal rage appeared to be the recent ruling against his petition to regain custody of his two sons and the judge ordering him to undergo psychological evaluations. Powell’s sons – Braden, 5 and Charlie, 7 were visiting their father. A social worker had brought them over for a supervised visit. A Washington court had given their custody to Susan’s parents – the Cox family in Utah.
When the social worker brought them to Powell’s house, he pushed her and brought his sons inside the house and locked himself in. After repeatedly pounding on the door and smelling a gas leak, she called her supervisor. But as she was on the call, the house exploded. The case worker was not hurt in the explosion. Shots taken from police and local channels’ helicopters show the house completely gutted.
In Utah, this was heartbreaking news for the Cox family, who had always blamed Josh Powell for Susan’s disappearance in December 2009. Soon after his wife was reported missing, Powell shifted with his kids from Utah to Washington.
Josh always claimed complete innocence and said that he was trying to raise his two kids in a normal manner while dealing with extraordinary circumstances. But investigators looking into Susan’s disappearance say that they had started verbalizing about what they saw on the night their mother disappeared. Josh was the only person named as a person of interest in the case.