Posts Tagged ‘pierce county’

KOMO News and QFOX 13 News in Seattle report that a new non-profit organization, Charlie’s Dinosaur, will be helping foster children.

Photo source: QFOX13, Seattle

When kids are taken from neglectful or troubled homes by the state, they often don’t have time to take any of their own belongings. A small group of Pierce County Detectives want to give those kids something to call their own.

Pierce County detectives who knew and loved Charlie and Braden Powell found a large dinosaur drawing made by Charlie, Susan’s oldest son, age 7. They decided to start a non-profit named “Charlie’s Dinosaur” in memory of Charlie and Braden.

They plan to collect donations so they can give away backpacks filled with toys, books, and hygiene items each month to foster children.

From KOMO News:

Thanks to … a handful of Pierce County detectives, Charlie’s Dinosaur was born, and donations helped it grow. Toiletries, toys and books – the essentials and good-to-haves – now fill backpacks for foster children in need. 

"We’re hoping to put out maybe a hundred backpacks a month to children who’ve been placed for either abuse or neglect," says Anderson.

And in the process, they’re honoring two children and helping kids be kids.

From QFOX 13:

Pierce County sheriff’s detective Kevin Johnson and Sgt. Theresa Berg found the drawing of Charlie’s dinosaur when they searched Josh Powell’s storage unit after he killed the boys during a visitation and blew up his home near Graham in February.  

"There were so few items that belonged to the boys that survived anything, so few items that this was kind of precious to us,” Berg said. 

Both Johnson and Berg had spent a lot of time with the Powell boys after Child Protective Services took custody of them from their father.

"These kids were not strangers to us,” Berg said. “They were comfortable with us. They would run to us. We liked them and we played with them."

Investigating their deaths was difficult.

"This was probably the first case like this I can ever remember actually crying afterwards,” Johnson said. “It was tough.”

Out of that anguish came an idea for a charity to help other foster kids.

"A lot of the people that are taken into protective custody don’t have any belongings at all, and if they do, we were told they have to carry them around in plastic garbage bags," Johnson said.

"It tells me that we can do something positive for kids and out of this horrible, horrible thing at least every time I look at it, I know that we’ve done something positive," Johnson said.


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On Thursday, September 22, at about 9:30 Pacific Time, Steve Powell, Josh Powell’s father, was arrested.

At the same time, Josh and Susan’s two little boys, ages 4 and 6, were taken into protective custody by the police. 

Steve Powell was charged with 14 counts of voyeurism and 1 count of child pornography.  In the August 25 search of Steve Powell’s house, police seized computers and other evidence and later found that Steve had thousands of pictures and videotapes of young girls and women. Some of these little girls were his neighbors, and it appeared that he had taken them with a telephoto lens from his bedroom window looking into his neighbor’s bathroom.

Here is a statement from the Pierce County prosecuting attorney about Steve Powell’s arrest.

Other pictures were taken at parks and places frequented by kids, focusing on female body parts in the pictures and videotapes.

Currently the police have only gone through 5-10% of the pictures (about 2,000 they’ve looked at so far) and they believe Steve Powell’s “collection” spans the last 10 years.  There were also several pictures of Steve Powell’s daughter-in-law, Susan Cox Powell.  The police stated that Susan was clothed in the pictures but they appeared to be taken without her knowledge.  The pictures police have seen so far focus on girls’ and women’s intimate body parts. 

Bail was set at $200,000 Friday during Steve Powell’s arraignment.  He is currently sitting in a Pierce County jail, unable to make bail.  His next hearing is October 11.

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