Steven Powell’s Estranged Daughter Reacts to His Death
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The man who may have been the last person to know what happened to missing Utah mother Susan Cox Powell has died.
Steven Powell died of a heart attack in Washington on Monday, according to a detective.
Powell was the father of Josh Powell, and Susan Powell’s father-in-law.
Steven Powell’s estranged daughter, Jennifer Graves has been an advocate for Susan since her disappearance in December 2009.
Graves believes it was her brother Josh who killed Susan.
Graves says she was surprised to hear of her dad’s death Monday night. She says she didn’t know he was having health problems, and the last time she made contact with him was when she testified against him.
Steven Powell was convicted on multiple voyeurism charges and a child porn charge in 2011. He spent many of the last years of his life in prison.
While those charges didn’t have anything to do with Susan’s disappearance, Graves says the passing of her father has closed yet another door in finding her sister-in-law.
She says she doesn’t know if he helped kill her, but she believes her dad knew something in the aftermath of her disappearance.
“Obviously my brother [Josh] committing suicide [in 2012] and then my other brother Michael committing suicide who also knew stuff and then my dad. I mean he’s kind of taken that stuff to the grave, unless he’s left physical evidence. I don’t know if they’re going to find anything, but we can be hopeful,” she said.
Graves says her dad’s death gives her peace of mind that he’s not going to come after her or her family. While she didn’t know if that was his intention, she says it was something she feared since testifying against him.
She contemplates his negative influence on others, like on her brother, but she says we still have to make our own choices.
“And I’d thought many, many times over the years, wondered if my father had chosen to be a good father and a good husband, would that have made a difference? Would my brother have chosen to kill his wife? All those things have played out the same, you know, anyway. I don’t know.”
She continued telling KSL that we still have to make our own choices.
She hopes people can be inspired going forward and walk away from influences bringing them down, something she did parting ways with her father.
Graves discusses having this kind of courage in a book she wrote, “A Light in Dark Places: A Story of Heartbreak, Survival and Redemption.”
Something else that gives Graves peace, her belief that Susan is with her boys in heaven.
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