I just got off the phone with Assistant Police Chief Black and he confirms to me Josh Powell rented a car in Salt Lake city two evenings after his wife went missing, and drove for hundreds of miles. Police do confirm there is a period of time they cannot account for Josh, or his whereabouts. So far, five search warrants have been executed on this case, three to make entry into the Powell family home, one for the family mini-van, and one for Josh Powell’s DNA. An anonymous donor just came forward and is offering a $10,000 reward for information to find Susan.
Josh Powell is not the sole person of interest, Assistant Chief Black says they have other persons of interest, but they are not naming those people at this time. Please keep in mind, a person of interest can be eliminated in an investigation, or can graduate to becoming a suspect. Josh Powell is not a suspect at this time. Although Josh is not considered a suspect, I am also told that he is not corporating with the investigation at all, and will not answer specifics about his wife’s disappearance. His lawyer has not been in contact with authorities recently as well. Josh at this time, from what we know, is visiting family members in Washington state. He drove more than 900 miles to be in Washington, and attend a prayer vigil on Sunday night for his wife Susan, and he did not speak to her parents while he was there. He did however speak to one of Susan’s sisters, and gave her a hug.
BACKGROUND: Police would like to question Josh Powell again, and since naming him a person of interest, they have requested all news footage pertaining to Josh Powell, specifically the interviews he gave with local stations after his wife went missing. Authorities sent subpoenas on Friday to all Salt Lake City television stations, but will not say what they are hoping to find in the interviews. Cops are looking to collect as much physical evidence as possible, and to process what they gather through the crime lab. Assistant Chief Black says Josh Powell is considered a person of interest, and earlier this week, with his attorney, Josh did submit to a DNA sample. Assistant Chief Black told me Josh answered a few general questions about his wife, but he would not answer any detailed questions about Susan (i.e. any enemies she may have had, answers about their personal relationship, etc). Josh’s position to the media is that he wants to find his wife, and investigators working the case want to find her too, but Assistant Chief Black says without answers to many questions they have for Josh, and having a working partnership with him, “it really hinders finding her in a timely manner.”
Assistant Chief Black says there’s enough circumstantial evidence to indicate that this is uncharacteristic of Susan to just disappear, and they are exploring the possibility that foul play could be involved. They don’t want to treat this case early on that Susan just up and walked away, they want to take all accounts into play in case this turns into a criminal investigation in the end.
“We wish he (Josh) would be more of a partner with us to help find his wife, and to have an extensive interview with us about a number of other questions,” says Assistant Chief Black. It’s been nearly impossible to verify the husband’s alibi that he was camping with his children the night his wife went missing, because the area where Josh says he went is vast, desert and mountain terrain. Unfortunately, several snowstorms have come and gone through the area since.
On Monday, December 14, 2009, I spoke to West Valley City Assistant Police Chief Black, and he went into the detail the timeline surrounding Susan’s disappearance. So far, this is what we have since Susan was last seen on evening of December 6th into the early morning hours of December 7, 2009.
Sunday, December 6, 2009: According to the Assistant Chief, Susan was at home this evening, and had a friend over for dinner. She went to bed, and was last seen by her husband Josh around 12:30 a.m. sleeping. Her husband, told investigators he took his children, ages 2 and 4, camping after his wife went to sleep. There was snow on the ground, and it was extremely cold. Susan and Josh were both due at work first thing in the morning.
Monday, December 7, 2009: Authorities say Susan and Josh do not show up for work, and her children were not dropped off at daycare. Susan’s family was notified and they called police. At that point, investigators made entry into their home to check their welfare. When investigators went inside the house, they realized no one was there. Assistant Chief Black says the officers backed out, and obtained a search warrant to come back in.
Monday, December 7, 2009: Around 5 p.m., authorities say Josh arrives back at home with both of his children. He is questioned by investigators, but according to Assistant Chief Black, “he did not offer an explanation as to where his wife was.” Josh only told investigators he last saw his wife at 12:30 a.m.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009: Police confirm in the evening hours, Josh rented a car in Salt Lake City and drove for hundreds of miles. There is a period of time when cops cannot account for Josh’s whereabouts.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009: Police served a search warrant on the home, and took out items that belong to the family.
Monday, December 14, 2009: Josh Powell hired a defense attorney in Utah.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009: Josh Powell is named a “person of interest” by police, and he submits a DNA sample to investigators.
Assistant Chief Black told me investigators could not find a camp site, there was snow on the ground at the time she disappeared, and the family could have gone camping anywhere from 100 miles of their home. He emphasized a camp site has not been located. At this time, Josh Powell is NOT considered a person of interest in Susan’s disappearance, or a suspect in this case. Investigators say they want to speak to him again, and they want to question other people as well. Please help give Susan’s family the answers they so desperately need.
If you have any information, please call police: (801) 840-4000
My thoughts and prayers are with Susan, her dear family and friends.