Josh Powell, the main suspect in the disappearance of wife Susan Powell, has died in a home explosion that also claimed the life of his two sons.
Powell and his two sons died in a home explosion minutes after a Child Protective Services officer brought the boys home for a supervised visit. According to reports, the CPS worker was prevented from entering the residence, while the children were allowed inside. Noting the smell of gas, the CPS worker called her supervisors, but the home exploded before help could arrive.
Josh Powell came under suspicion when his wife, Susan, went missing in Utah. His story of taking the boys camping was met with cynicism since the night in question saw freezing temperatures. Susan Powell has never been found, and the children were sent to live with their maternal grandparents. A judge denied awarding custody back to Josh Powell, citing the need for him to take a psycho-sexual evaluation.
Sergeant Mike Powell of the West Valley City Police Department in Utah, which is handling Susan's missing person case, told reporters, "Quite frankly, this has obviously quickly unfolded up in Washington, and we're obviously just working through the details ourselves here. We are in contact with authorities; it's obviously an ongoing situation at this point."
Jeffrey Bassett, Powell's lawyer, told the Associated Press that he had received an email from his client moments before the explosion. It read simply, "I'm sorry. Goodbye."
Susan Powell's parents, Chuck and Judy Cox, fought with Josh repeatedly after being awarded full custody of the boys. According to reports, they feared that Josh would do something drastic in order to gain control of the children.
"It's the most horrifying thing you can imagine. The Coxes are absolutely devastated. They were always very fearful of him doing something like this, and he did it," they stated through attorney Steve Downing.