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Utah man found guilty of murdering teenage couple and dumping bodies in abandoned mine


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A Utah jury found a man guilty of murdering two teenagers, ending a case that had been open for more than four years.

On Friday, the jury found Jerrod Baum guilty on eight counts related to the murders of Breezy Otteson and Riley Powell, who were a couple.

The bodies of Otteson and Powell were both found in an abandoned Utah mine. The two were last seen together on Dec. 29, 2017, and were reported missing on Jan. 2, 2018, according to KSLTV.

The horrific discovery of the two teenagers was made on March 27, 2018, where they were both found with their hands tied behind their backs with stab wounds present, according to a police affidavit.

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Jerrod Baum
(Utah County Sheriff’s Office)

Baum was arrested a day after the discovery and was eventually charged with first degree murder for both deaths, in addition to other crimes.

He was found guilty of two counts of aggravated murder, two counts of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of desecration of a corpse, one count of obstruction of justice and one count of possession of weapons. dangerous by someone with restricted access, according to Fox 13.

Baum’s sentencing is scheduled for June 1. Prosecutors did not seek the death penalty since the state was considering repealing capital punishment.

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The trial began on March 7, after a judge determined on May 1, 2019 that there was enough evidence to take the case to trial.

Jurors spent nearly two days in deliberation, according to Fox 13.

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Baum’s ex-girlfriend, Morgan Lewis Henderson, told detectives he used a knife to kill the two teenagers before dumping their bodies in an abandoned mine.

Brelynne "Costs" Otteson, 17, and her boyfriend, Riley Powell, 18

Brelynne “Breezy” Otteson, 17, and her boyfriend, Riley Powell, 18

Henderson later told detectives that she saw Otteson and Powell tied up in the back of Powell’s jeep, and Baum told her to “get in the jeep and they would go for a walk and have a chat”.


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