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Steve Powell declares bankruptcy

Published July 12, 2014 11:56 am

Judgment • Susan Powell's father-in-law lists $2.1 million in liabilities in petition.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Steve Powell, whose daughter-in-law disappeared in Utah in 2009, has declared bankruptcy.

Powell filed his bankruptcy petition June 19 in federal court in Tacoma, Wash. He lists $289,947 in assets and $2.1 million in liabilities.

Those liabilities include a $1.8 million judgment against Powell for photographing two neighbor girls in various states of undress. To satisfy the judgment, payable to the girls' mother, the Pierce County, Wash., Sheriff's Department auctioned Powell's house in Puyallup.

However, Powell listed the $270,000 house as an asset and says in his bankruptcy papers he believes the auction and the judgment are "void."

Powell also says in the papers that he may have a claim for damages against the sheriff, the West Valley City Police Department, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies.

Steve Powell's daughter-in-law, Susan Powell, disappeared from her home in West Valley City on Dec. 6, 2009. She has not been found.

Her husband, Josh Powell, was the lone person of interest in her disappearance. While serving a search warrant to investigate what they suspected as kidnapping and murder, police found Steve Powell's photos of the girls. Police arrested him in September 2011. The next year, Powell was convicted of 12 counts of voyeurism.

Powell was released from a Washington prison in March of this year after being incarcerated for about 2½ years.

Josh Powell killed himself and his two sons on Feb. 5, 2012, in Graham, Wash.

ncarlisle@sltrib.com

Twitter: @natecarlisle