Breezy and Riley’s families embrace outside courtroom following Jerrod Baum’s initial court hearing. pic.twitter.com/jjXx6XtqFx— DNews Crime Team (@DNewsCrimeTeam) April 3, 2018
The man who was accused of brutally murdering a two teenagers and dumping their bodies in a mineshaft in Utah has made his first appearance in court.
Jerrod Baum was chained when was brought into court for his first hearing. A huge Swastika tattoo could be seen through the neck of his shirt with a smaller one on his face.
Baum was accused of kidnapping and murdering Brelynne 'Breezy' Otteson, 17, and Riley Powell, 18, in December 2017. The accused was charged after his girlfriend, Morgan Henderson, informed police of the murders and the location of the two bodies.
Morgan was brought into police custody for a separate case when she led the investigators on the case to Powell’s missing jeep and personal belongings of both the teenagers.
According to police records, Baum was charged with two counts of aggravated murder, first degree felony; two counts of aggravated kidnapping, first degree felony; two counts of desecration of a dead human body, third degree felony; one count of possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person, third degree felony; one count of witness tampering, third degree felony; and one count of obstructing justice, class A misdemeanor.
According to court documents, Baum tied up Breezy and made her watch as he beat and stabbed Powell to death. He, then, slit Breezy’s throat and dumped their bodies 100 feet down the Tintic Standard Mine No. 2 near Eureka.
The teenage couples’ family filed a missing report for Powell and Breezy on Jan. 2, 2018. The teenagers’ remains were discovered in March, three months after the report was filed.
The victim’s families know the case will take years to go to trial but they are not interested in a plea deal for Baum. They want him to receive the death penalty.
"We knew it was going to be long and drawn out; we knew that it wasn’t going to be quick and fast. Unfortunately that’s how it goes," Breezy’s aunt, Amanda Hunt, told the Daily Herald.
Prosecutor Chad Grunander knows the case will be slow to get to trial but the possibility of a death penalty is high since it is a case of double murder.
According to police documents, Baum killed the couple because they visited his girlfriend. He had forbidden Morgan to see male visitors.
“It was too bad because he has never killed an innocent before,” Baum said when he saw the teenage couple hanging with Morgan.
He then allegedly tied the teenagers and transported them to the mine site where he decimated their bodies.
Baum’s police arrest records go back to the 1990s with charges including theft and assault. Currently, Baum is being held without bail.
Thumbnail / Banner : Utah County Sheriff’s Department