Police in Washington state who searched a storage unit rented by Josh Powell found a stained comforter that tested positive for blood in initial exams, according to documents filed in court Friday.
Pierce County detectives reported finding a gray-blue comforter with a stain. The search warrant documents say the comforter tested positive for blood. Investigators planned to perform further tests.
Powell killed himself and his two young sons in a gas-fueled inferno Sunday, and Pierce County authorities consider it an admission that he killed his wife.
Investigators had considered Josh Powell a person of interest since his wife, Susan Powell, disappeared in Utah in 2009. At the time, Powell said he took his two sons ice camping in subfreezing temperatures.
Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist said presumptive tests are conducted with a field kit and that a determination of blood won’t be confirmed until the item is examined in the lab.
“Field tests are not infallible,” he said.
Lindquist said he expects the finding will be something law enforcement will share with colleagues in Utah who have been investigating Susan Powell’s disappearance. The comforter was the only item police kept.
Investigators also found toys and kids’ clothes in garbage bags, as well as framed pictures in the storage unit. Those items were given to Susan Powell’s family.
Meanwhile, according to a report from The News Tribune, the Westboro Baptist Church may not be coming for the Powell boys’ service after all. A Tweet sent from leader Fred Phelps Jr’s Twitter account apparently read “Washington trip now cancelled.” The decision, The News Tribune reports, came after Phelps was interviewed on the conservative radio show the “Bobby D Show.”
The funeral for the two Powell boys is scheduled for Saturday, February 11 in Tacoma.
— Mike Baker, Copyright 2012 The Associated Press, with contributions from tamacbsseattle