PROVO, Utah (TCD) -- A jury convicted a 45-year-old man last week of killing a teenage couple and disposing of their bodies in a mineshaft in 2017.
According to KSTU-TV, Jerrod Baum was found guilty Friday, April 15, of two counts each of aggravated murder, aggravated kidnapping, and abuse of desecration of a human body for the deaths of Breezy Otteson and her boyfriend Riley Powell. KSL-TV reports he was also convicted of obstruction of justice and possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person.
Powell and Otteson were last seen Dec. 30, 2017, as they were making their way to Juab County in rural Utah, according to KUTV-TV. Powell was reportedly communicating with Baum’s then-girlfriend, Morgan Lewis, and had plans to meet at Lewis' home. The last messages were reportedly sent around 11 p.m. on Dec. 29.
The couple was reported missing Jan. 2, 2018. About two weeks later, Juab County Sheriff’s Office investigators found the Jeep Powell and Otteson were reportedly driving. Juab County Sheriff Douglas Anderson said the car’s placement was "highly suspicious" and that the car was "dropped off there by intention and not by the two missing individuals."
In March 2018, investigators found Powell and Otteson’s bodies inside Tintic Standing Mine Number Two. Baum was arrested March 29, 2018. According to KUTV, Baum reportedly tied up Powell and Otteson in the Jeep, stabbed them to death, then threw their bodies in the mine.