Susan Powell's father seeks custody of her 2 kids

Print
Email
|

by Associated Press and KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 10:21 AM

Updated Friday, Sep 23 at 2:08 PM

TACOMA, Wash. -- A lawyer for the father of missing Utah mom Susan Powell said Friday he plans to file a court motion asking that custody of Powell's two young children be granted to their maternal grandfather, Chuck Cox -- a move prompted by the arrest of the boys' other grandfatheron charges of voyeurism and possession of child pornography.
 
The boys had been living with their father, Josh Powell, at the Puyallup home of his father, Steven Powell, 61, who was arrested Thursday at his home. The two boys were taken into protective custody after Steven Powell's arrest.
 
Prosecutor Mark Lindquist said Steven Powell is charged with 14 felony counts of voyeurism and one count of possession of child pornography. He said Utah police found "thousands of images of females being videotaped without their knowledge, including Susan Powell," on tapes and discs seized from his home during an Aug. 25 search as part of their investigation into her disappearance.
 
The videos were found in Steven Powell's bedroom. Powell was set for arraignment Friday in Superior Court.
 
His son, Josh Powell, is the only named person of interest in his wife's disappearance. Josh Powell has never been arrested or charged in the case.
 
"The photographer focuses on the women's buttocks, breasts," Lindquist said in a statement. "Many images were of minor females."

The images included shots of two girls who were as young as 8 and 10 years old at the time, the prosecutor said.
 
Pierce County authorities determined those girls lived near Steven Powell from June 2006 to August 2007. According to court papers filed Friday, the pictures were taken when the two girls were taking baths.

"Basically he's a peeping tom with high tech equipment," said Ed Troyer, Pierce County Sheriff's Department spokesperson.
 
A person who answered the phone at the Powell home Thursday night hung up on a reporter.

Chuck Cox was also in court Friday for a scheduled hearing regarding Josh Powell's plan to release his missing wife's private journals, a step the Cox family opposed. The judge said the journals could not be released.

Cox reacted to news of Steven Powell's arrest: "I think it's disgusting. I think it shows (Susan's) concerns were justified about Steven Powell."

Cox said his main concern now is the whereabouts of his two young grandsons.

“I think it’s a sad day for the Powell family,” he said. "I am relieved that the children are no longer in that household."

Cox said he would rather have the children stay in foster care than be in the Powell household.

Neither family will get the boys for the time being; they will remain in foster care. A hearing is scheduled in family court on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, one of Susan Powell's friends in Utah said she is relieved Steven Powell is behind bars, saying Susan often feared him.

"I was just amazed and really glad. I've known for a long time what kind of person Steven Powell is and I was so, so worried about Susan's boys being in that house with him for almost two years," said Kiirsi Hellewell, Susan Powell's friend.

In a statement issued late Wednesday, Utah police investigating Susan Powell's disappearance  said Steven Powell's arrest was not related to the missing persons case.
 
West Valley City police have said Josh Powell has been uncooperative in the investigation into his missing wife. He claims he took the couple's two sons -- then ages 4 and 2 -- on a midnight camping trip in the mountains west of Salt Lake City on Dec. 6, 2009, the night before Susan Powell was reported missing.
 
Authorities have spent the last 11 days searching a remote central Utah desert about 30 miles from where Josh Powell claims he went camping that night. At one point, they said they found a "shallow grave" after cadaver dogs alerted them to the spot, but they later found no human remains.
 
The search of the Powell's home came after police wrapped up a search for evidence in a network of abandoned mines outside Ely, Nev.
 
Around that time in August, Josh Powell and his father went on national television to discuss the case.
 
They claimed Susan Powell was promiscuous, emotionally unstable and suicidal, a claim her family denies.
 
Steven Powell said he had a flirtatious relationship with his daughter-in-law and believed they were in love.
 
"Susan was very sexual with me," Steve Powell told ABC's Good Morning America. "We interacted in a lot of sexual ways because Susan enjoys doing that."
 
Cox, Susan's father, denied the allegations, and said it was Steve Powell who initiated unwanted sexual advances.
 
Josh Powell has denied killing his wife or having anything to do with her disappearance.
 
"I would never even hurt her," a tearful, red-eyed Josh Powell told CBS's Early Show in August.
 
Josh and his father have said they believe Susan Powell ran off with another man.
 
"I'm still thinking she left," Steve Powell told the AP in August. "Hopefully they'll be able to find her at some point. ... We don't believe she's dead."
 
 

Print
Email
|