STATE OF UTAH County of Salt Lake

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Proof by Affidavit under oath having been made this day before me by DETECTIVE DARRELL DAIN, I am satisfied that there is probable cause to believe:




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In the City of West Valley, County of Salt Lake, State of Utah, there is now being possessed or concealed certain property or evidence described as: That which is evidentiary to the ongoing criminal investigation involving the. ._ disappearance of Susan Marie Powell on December 2009 in West Val City, Salt Lake Cou State of Utah,

And that said property or evidence:

Was unlawfully acquired or is unlawfully possessed; or Has been used to commit or conceal a public offense; or Is being possessed with the purpose to use it as a means of committing or concealing a public offense; or .: Consists of an item or constitutes evidence of illegal conduct, possesse.clbya party to the illegal conduct. . '.' .' . . ..

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To make a search of the above-named or described items for the herein-above described property or evidence, and if you find the same or any part thereof, to bring it forthwith before me at the THIRD DISTRICT COURT - SALT LAKE DEPARTMENT, County of Salt Lake, State of Utah, or retain such property in your custody, subject to the order of this court. GIVEN UNDER MY HAND and dated this


day of June, 2010.


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Case No. --------

I, DARRELL DAIN, being first duly sworn, hereby depose and state as follows:

In the City of West Valley, County of Salt Lake, State of Utah, there is now being possessed or concealed certain property or evidence described as:







That which is evidentiary to the ongoing criminal investigation involving the disappearance of Susan Marie Powell on December 6,2009 in West Valley City, Salt Lake County, State of Utah,

And that said property or evidence: Was unlawfully acquired or is unlawfully possessed; or Has been used to commit or conceal a public offense; or Is being possessed with the purpose to use it as a means of committing or concealing a public offense; or
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Consists of an item or constitutes evidence of illegal conduct, oossesseaby '8 ' party to the illegal conduct. .: ;:;-;::;.,:, Your affiant believes the property and evidence described above is evidentiary and material to the ongoing investigation related to the disappearance of Susan fytarie Powell. The facts to establish the grounds for issuance of a Search Warrant are..

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I am a Police Officer with the West Valley City Police Department and have been since 1995. Your affiant is currently assigned as a Detective to the ' Investigations Division, Major Crimes Squad. Your affiant has been given the .. responsibility to investigate violent crimes occurring in West Valley City and me-state of Utah. Your affiant has received training in police investigations to include but is not limited to, deaths, sex offenses, violent crimes against people, property oftenses'and general crime scene investigations. Your affiant has attended multiple trainings"and received detailed instruction in computer investigations relating to violent and narcotic related crime. In addition, your affiant has previously served as an undercover' ,

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Detective investigating drug crimes in Utah and other areas of the United States. Your affiant has been a sworn task force member of the Federal Agencies DEA and H.UD~ DIG with assigned duties of performing undercover operations in relation to illicit.~~~~ .• narcotic activity within the United States. Furthermore, your affiant has been as~ig.~~d to a gang unit working HIDTA determined Weed and Seed areas enforcing gang and drug statutes. Your affiant has received extensive training to perform the described duties. Your affiant has received specific and detailed instruction related to cell phone technology and computer crime related investigations as they pertain to violent and narcotic related felonies from the Public Agency Training Council (PATC); Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATF) - Project Safe Neighborhood; Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) - Special Operations Division - Internet Telecommunications Exploitation Program; California Narcotic Officer Association (CNOA); California Department of Justice - Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement (DOJBNE); and the Clandestine Lab Investigators Association (CLlA). The facts in this affidavit come from my personal observations, my training and experience, and information obtained from other officers and witnesses. This affidavit is intended to show merely that there is sufficient probable cause for the requested warrant and does not set forth all of my knowledge about this matter. '


Your affiant states to the court that Susan Marie Powell (herelnatter.



referred to as the victim, daughter, or wife) was reported missing on December 7,

2009. She was last seen approximately 5:00 pm on December 6, 2009,

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Jovanna Owens, a family friend. The victim was reported missing on December 7,2009 by a daycare:
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provider when the victim and her children did not show up Monday morning for scheduled care. This fact was also verified by the victim's mother in law,.J:errfca Powell. Terrica also advised that in addition to the victim, the victim's husband, Joshua Powell, and their two small children ages two (B.P) and four (C.P.) were
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also missing. Law enforcement was able to verify that neither Joshua ~~t.:;.~us.an had arrived at their respective jobs on Monday, December 7,2009.

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Your affiant has been able to document numerous instances of marital discord between Joshua and his wife.






The victim had openly expressed to several family and friends with whom your affiant spoke which revealed her desire to pursue divorce proceedings against Joshua Powell. In addition, the victim expressed fears to several friends_

Your affiant, through authorized legal process from this Third District Court, did discover a concealed safe deposit box where the victim had

also placed a letter indicated to be for law enforcemt:!nt if she were to disappear. Your affiant knows this safe deposit box to only have been accessed on two occasions by Susan Marie Powell and no other person; . ..


In the late afternoon of Monday, December 7, after numerous attempw.~,
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contact was finally made with Joshua Powell on his cell phone by his sister Jennie using her cell phone. At her inquiry, Joshua told his sister he had been
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driving around the Salt Lake area, and that he was then en-route to pick the victim up at work, and he wanted to know what was going on. She advised him



enforcement was involved in their disappearance, and that he needed to speak with Detective Maxwell of the West Valley City Police Department Immediately.
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Joshua then made no attempt to contact Det. Maxwell and Maxwell's continuing 4 . ,<~, ,.





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attempts to contact Joshua on his cell phone were not successful.

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Maxwell's use of Jennie's cell phone was he able to get Joshua to answer~~~~~ Your affiant advises the court that , obtained through legal

process authorized by the 3rd District Court, County of Salt Lake, State of Utah, your affiant has determined that messages left on Joshua's phone by Maxwell had already been checked by him, and that he was fully aware of his family's missing status. Furthermore, upon receipt of the message and fully knowing his status and law enforcement involvement, Joshua called the victim's cell phone,

which he had with him, and he left a message on it for the victim indicating he was on his way back. He then professed no knowledge of his status to' his sister and Detective Maxwell. Your affiant believes Joshua was purposely deceitful with his sister and Detective Maxwell so as to hinder or obstruct discovery of..~".: hls ·

whereabouts and those locations in relation to the probable kidnap or unlawful


detention, or homicide of his wife.






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Your affiant knows that Joshua initially checked messages on his cell phone at approximately 3:00 pm on Monday, December 7. He did so while .' . near
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his residence in West Valley City. After receipt of his messages and in~~rll1atlon
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from his sister indicating his missing status and law enforcement involvement, he
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never did go home but drove south to the Lehi City area and made a calttothe
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victim's cell phone. Your affiant states to the court that the victim's cell ph~~E:he
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was calling was also in his possession at the time of this call. He left a;message
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for his wife that he was on his way back from a trip.
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At approximately 6:30 pm, after approximately three hours knowing that law enforcement wanted to speak with him, Joshua arrived at his residence accompanied by his children, but he was without the victim. During an Interview, Joshua told Detective Maxwell he did not know where his wife was, and that he had not seen her since Sunday night when he went camping. He stated that on

Sunday night, December 6, 2009 he decided to go camping with his two children on the Pony Express Trail South and West of Cedar Fort, Utah. Joshua indicates that they departed their residence at approximately 12:30 AM to 1:00 AM on




Monday morning, and they did so without the victim. At Maxwell's expression of interest regarding the timing and involvement of his two small children in thls ,'." "',.....,;.' event, and during extreme weather, Joshua stated that he went anyway- tn.order to test a new generator. With further questioning regarding the timing and lack of , , .- communication with anyone, including his work, he stated that he was confu-sed



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and didn't know it was Monday. After he realized he had taken the trip o!1:Monday
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instead of Sunday, he believed that due to the mix up he had most likely been" , fired and made no attempt to report to or contact his work. Maxwell advised your affiant that during his initial interview, Joshua stated that he did not know where his wife was, and he did not have any concern' f9.r_l1er
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welfare. During a consent search of the victim's residence at the time' oftl)15 :' interview, two fans blowing on the front room carpet and couch areas were observed. Joshua advised that he had just cleaned the couch and carpet'on"Sunday prior to leaving for the camping trip. A subsequent search warrant at this residence revealed the presence of human blood belonging to the victim, on the tile area the previously mentioned couch. During this same

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search warrant, the victim's purse was also located which contained all the victim's personal items including credit cards and identification.
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Joshua Powell's vehicle was also searched by his consent at this time. Det. Maxwell observed a cellular phone inside the vehicle. Det. MaxweU tol~ your
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affiant that upon asking Joshua about the phone he immediately noticed that Joshua became surprisingly pensive and had difficulty answering que~t~Q,I1S to .as
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it being in the vehicle. Det. Maxwell asked Joshua, who appeared to be cooperating with law enforcement at this time, if he could take the cell phpr;le and
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Joshua's personal cell phone. Joshua agreed, and it was only later that Det.

Maxwell noticed that the SIM cards from the phones which can contain, ,'.:...;: . '~
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information had been removed. The victim has no history of spontaneously leaving home without .,:' "
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contacting family, friends, or co-workers. Three of the victim's co-work~rs:were contacted by Detective Cook of the West Valley Police Department who ad~is:~d that they had not heard from the victim since the previous work week, andthat .. ~ e .': . .....
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this was not normal. All advised they were very concerned for her welfare~~' he T
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co-workers advised Det. Cook that the victim had told them that If anything','e.ver
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happened to her, she had a file for them to give to the police. Detectiy.~:~oPk~dld obtain this file

An interview of the oldest child (C.P.) was conducted at the Children Justice Center by Detective Waelty of the West Valley City Police Department, Special Victim Unit. This child confirmed the camping trip on Sunday night, but also stated that the victim had gone with them but decided to stay there and not come home.
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Your affiant was able to contact two neighbors in the same circle as the Powell residence. All stated that they did not have any knowledge of the victim's whereabouts, and all were adamant that the victim would never leave without her

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children. All professed to have knowledge of the victim's numerous marltal problems with Joshua, and indicated that her disappearance is highly unusual. The identity of the neighbors is known to your affiant and available to the court.

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Your affiant made contact


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Your affiant was ....... in contact with

The identities of these persons are known to your affiant and available to the court. Your affiant made contact with Richard and Judy Cox (father and mother of the victim) in Washington State. Richard confirmed to your affiant personal discussions with his daughter regarding past marital discord between the victim and Joshua. Richard detailed a mentally abusive and controlling environment which prevented social interaction between the victim and others. He also. .' .
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indicated his daughter's desire to work through these problems and save her marriage and family .




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During the service of search warrants, previously indicated in this affidavit, on the residence and vehicle of Joshua Powell on December 8, 2009 (authorized by Judge Henroid of the Third District Court) and December 9, 2009 (authorized by Judge Hilder of the Third District Court) numerous digital media storage devices were located. In particular:



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Based on my training and experience, and the facts as set forth in this affidavit, fhere is probable cause to believe that on the indicated digital storage media devices there exists evidence which is relevant and material to an ongoing criminal investigation, and to the crimes of unlawful detention, kidnapping, and/or homicide. Accordingly;~a search warrant is requested. '
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It is respectfully requested that this Court issue an order sealing, ~~til further order of the Court, all papers submitted in support of this applicati~ri;'.· including the application and search warrant. I believe that sealing this document is necessary because the items and information to be seized are relevant to 'an
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ongoing criminal investigation, and that not all of the targets, sources, .~,r.Jt~ms
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involved in this investigation will be searched at this time. Based upon my~'::-:: . training and experience, I have learned that persons actively search for criminal affidavits and search warrants via the internet and other methods, and they disseminate them to other persons as they deem appropriate, e.g., by posting them publicly online through the carding forums or hard copy. Premature disclosure of the contents of this affidavit and related documents may have a significant and negative impact on the continuing investigation and may severely jeopardize its effectiveness. On December 18, 2009 Judge Atherton signed an

order that pursuant to Rule 40(m) of the Utah Rules of Criminal Procedure-and/or

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Utah Code Ann. 77-22-2, the Powell Files are sealed and will remain sealed.
This warrant has been reviewed by Deputy District Attorney Sandi Johnson of the Salt Lake County District Attorney Office, and it has been approved for presentation to the court.

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ectfully submitted, ...___-'"
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