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Josh Powell had recently lost a custody battle and been ordered to receive a psychological evaluation. He torched his home with his two children inside.
Josh Powell, a suspect in the 2009 disappearance of his wife Susan Cox-Powell, sent an email to his attorney on Sunday that said, "I'm sorry. Goodbye."
Powell, of Puyallup, Washington, had recently lost a custody battle over his two children, and the court ordered him to undergo psychological testing, CNN reported, due to suspicions he possessed child pornography and other concerns.
Very soon after, a Washington state Child Protective Services officer dropped off his two children for a supervised visit. Powell brought his children inside, locked the door, and his home exploded. A fire engulfed the building and burned it to the ground.
In a letter Powell wrote to the court pleading for his sons to remain in his custody, he said, "For over four months already, my interactions with my sons and many other aspects of my character have been investigated and documented … I have proven myself as a fit and loving father who provides a stable home even in the face of great adversity. ... It is time for my sons to come home," ABC reported.
"This was all on him," said Ed Troyer, the spokesman for the Pierce County, Washington sheriff. "He set this up. He did it," CNN reported.
Powell had been a suspect in the 2009 disappearance of his wife in Utah. A bitter legal and media battle raged between Susan's parents and Powell, culminating in Sunday's explosion and fire. A Utah law enforcement officer told CNN that Powell was always the sole suspect: "We just needed a little bit more. Everywhere we looked, it always came back to Josh," West Valley City Police Chief Buzz Nielsen said.
A video report from CNN: