GRAHAM, Wash. (AP) — An explosion at a Washington state home has killed Josh Powell, the husband of a missing Utah woman, plus their two young sons, officials said Sunday.
The explosion occurred moments after a Child Protective Services worker brought the two boys to the home for a supervised visit, Graham Fire and Rescue Chief Gary Franz told The Associated Press.
Powell let the boys in the house, then blocked the social worker from entering. The social worker called her supervisors to report that she could smell gas, and the home exploded.
"Everything we know right now, this has become a crime scene," Franz said.
Powell was under investigation in the disappearance of his 28-year-old wife, Susan Powell, from their West Valley City, Utah, home in December 2009. He claimed he had taken the boys on a midnight excursion in freezing temperatures when she vanished.
The case took a bizarre turn last year after Powell's father, Steve, was arrested for investigation of voyeurism and possessing child pornography. Josh was living at his father's home at the time, and a judge gave Susan Powell's parents custody of the boys.
Last Thursday, a judge ruled that the children of missing Utah mother Susan Powell must remain in the custody of her parents, and that they would remain with the grandparents unless their father agreed to undergo psycho-sexual evaluation.