Final memorial service honors teen couple murdered in Utah

TOOELE COUNTY, Utah (KSTU) -- Two families who live hours apart, changed forever by the same horrific crime.

After last weekend's memorial service in Eureka, family and friends came together Saturday in Tooele to say one final goodbye to Breezy Otteson and Riley Powell.

Amanda Hunt is Breezy’s aunt.

“The community is our family now,” Hunt said.

Surrounded by the supportive community who they now consider family, the families of Breezy and Riley say their final goodbyes.

Man accused of brutally murdering teen couple
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Man accused of brutally murdering teen couple

Jerrod Baum is accused of killing a teenage couple because he was upset they visited his girlfriend.

(Photo: KSTU)

Riley Powell and his girlfriend, Breezy Otteson were reportedly stabbed  and thrown into an open mine to die.

(Photo: KSTU)

Baum's girlfriend told police that he believed Otteson was pregnant and congratulated the couple as they walked from the car to the open mine shaft.

(Photo: KSTU)

Court documents state Baum forced Otteson to kneel near the open mine pit and watch him beat and stab Powell before Baum slit her throat and threw the teens into the open mine to die.

(Photo: KSTU)

"My brother didn't deserve this and neither did she. They had a whole life, we had a whole life to live... she was only 17, he was 18," said Riley's sister Nikka Powell.

(Photo: KSTU)

Baum is charged with two counts of aggravated murder, two counts of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of desecration of a human body, possession of a dangerous weapon and obstruction of justice.

(Photo: KSTU)

"These kids [now] have no life, he doesn't deserve a life," said Riley's father, Bill Powell. 

(Photo: KSTU)


Riley’s father, Bill Powell, says it’s been heartwarming to see all the support.

“Makes you feel good that there are people who care,” Powell said.

At this last memorial service at an LDS Church in Tooele, they shared memories of the teens who were brutally murdered before their bodies were dumped in an abandoned Utah County mine.

“It’s wonderful to hear those stories about all the memories,” says Breezy’s sister, Madison Otteson.

Hunt shared a sweet story about Breezy.

“When Maddie had hurt her leg and how Breezy was the one to take care of her. She would carry her everywhere,” Hunt recalled.

Powell shared a funny story about Riley.

“Anything that was a horrible job I'd have him do," Powell said. "He was supposed to teach my girlfriend Debbie how to run the bobcat."

The families of Riley and Breezy are determined to keep their memories alive.

“We want to keep it alive," Hunt said. "We want people to remember them for who they are and not what happened to them."

As they lay the teens to rest, the families are closing one chapter, with the hardest one still to come.

“We have a long, hard road ahead of us and it’s not going to be easy,” Hunt said.

The families are now committed to getting justice.

Police have charged Jerrod Baum with eight felonies including aggravated murder, which could lead to the death penalty.

Baum is expected back in court on April 26.

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