The Associated Press reports that two teenagers in love were found stabbed at the bottom of a mine shaft in Salt Lake City, and Jarred Baum, 41, and Morgan Henderson, 34, are facing charges in their deaths.
Brelynne “Breezy” Otteson, 17, and Riley Powell, 18, were discovered bound and stabbed at the bottom of a 100 foot mine shaft months after their disappearance. The couple vanished days after Christmas on December 30, 2017. After finishing up Christmas celebrations with their families, the two teenagers planned to visit Powell’s ex-girlfriend, Henderson, to smoke marijuana.
Henderson and Powell remained friends after their split, but Henderson’s boyfriend, Baum, didn’t like her to have male friends over to their home. When Baum came home that evening and discovered the teens there, he beat and stabbed Powell to death as Otteson watched, just before cutting her throat, according to prosecutors.
Otteson’s mother had died in a car crash and Powell had been kicked out of school for possessing a gun he planned to take hunting. The two found love in each other and Otteson even thought she was pregnant, telling her family this fact over Thanksgiving. The two lived with Powell’s father in Eureka and Powell found work as a plumber after finally graduating.
Baum has been in and out of jail since robbing a Burger King at the age of 15. Henderson told investigators that Baum tied the teenagers up, taped their mouths shut and put them in the back of Powell’s jeep. He then drove the four of them a few miles out of town and led the teenagers to the mouth of a mine that was 2,000 feet deep. Although Otteson was not in fact pregnant, Baum congratulated her on her pregnancy at one point.
Baum proceeded to make Otteson kneel and witness him beating and stabbing Powell to death, then slit her throat and threw her in the shaft after him.
The bodies were discovered three months later, when Henderson was pulled over on March 25 with weapons in her car. She was arrested and told police of what happened, then led them to the teenagers’ remains.
Baum has been charged with aggravated murder, kidnapping and other charges that could bring the death penalty. Henderson, meanwhile, has been charged with obstruction of justice.
*Photo credit KUTV