Home / National News / Susan Powell Tip Renews Search for Her Body


(SALEM, Ore.) — Cadaver dogs and cops searched an Oregon farm for a third day Thursday on a tip that they might find the remains of missing Utah mom Susan Powell.

So far the search has failed to turn up any signs of the woman who disappeared from her home in West Valley, Utah, in December 2009.

The disappearance of Susan Powell triggered a massive investigation that focused on her husband Josh Powell and ended when Josh Powell killed himself and his two sons in a fiery explosion.

The latest search began when Susan Powell’s father, Chuck Cox, received a call saying that Josh Powell’s aunt and uncle had lived on an 180 acre farm in a remote area of Oregon. Because they were sympathetic to Josh Powell, the tipster told Cox, they may have hidden Susan’s body there.

Police responded to the tip and searched the area with cadaver dogs for seven hours on Tuesday, and for 8-10 hours on Wednesday. No human remains were found, only deer bones and some other non-human bones turned up on the property. Police said that they are continuing the search Thursday and are interviewing neighbors in the area.

Cox, who accompanied some of the search dogs on the hunt, praised the West Valley Police on their continued work in the case.

“These people are dedicated, and I’m just heartened that they will never give up,” he told ABC News.

The property, which is a 12.5 hour drive from where the Powell family lived in Utah, was the home of the aunt and uncle of Josh Powell, according to Cox. They no longer live at the property, ABC News affiliate KATU reported.

Susan Powell, 28, was last seen in December 2009 at the Utah home she shared with her husband and their two young sons. Josh Powell told authorities that he had decided take an impromptu midnight camping trip with the boys — in the midst of a winter storm — the night his wife vanished. Powell says that he returned home to find his wife gone and has claimed that his wife left on her own.

Josh Powell was named a “person of interest” in the investigation into his wife’s disappearance, but was never charged. In January 2010 he moved with his sons into the home owned by his father, Steven Powell, in Puyallup, Wash.

Steven Powell was charged in September 2011 with using a telephoto lens to take photos of two young girls in the bathroom of a neighbor’s house. He was charged with 14 counts of voyeurism and one count of child pornography and was held on $200,000 bail.

Josh Powell was named a “subject” in the child porn investigation, and the state removed Powell’s two young sons from the home and from his custody cecause of the presence of child porn in the house.

On Feb. 5, 2012, during a supervised visit with his boys, Josh Powell locked a Child Protective Services worker out of his house, attacked the boys with a hatchet and set off an explosion that killed himself and his two sons.

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