PROVO, Utah – The man accused of killing two teens and dumping their bodies in an abandoned mine in Eureka appeared in court Thursday.
The hearing for 41-year-old Jerrod Baum was brief, lasting only a few minutes.
Attorneys determined there is so much information and evidence for the defense to digest, Baum’s next court appearance won’t be until Aug. 1.
Baum shuffled into court in handcuffs and shackles facing eight felonies, including aggravated kidnapping and aggravated murder.
The capital charges involved may make this a death penalty case.
A month ago, the bodies of Breezy Otteson and Riley Powell were found in an abandoned mine near Eureka.
The teens were reported missing in late December and, according to charging documents, Baum was upset Riley and Breezy visited his girlfriend’s home.
Investigators said the ex-con allegedly kidnapped both teens, tied them up, gagged them with duct tape and then beat and stabbed both of them to death, before dumping their bodies down the mineshaft.
After the hearing, relatives of the victims said it was painful to sit so close to the man who allegedly murdered their loved ones in such a brutal fashion.
Bill Powell, Riley’s father, and Amanda Hunt, Breezy’s aunt, said they want Baum to get the death penalty if he’s convicted.
Those are wishes the prosecutor will take into account before deciding whether or not to even pursue a death penalty case.
For now, Baum will remain in Utah County Jail awaiting his next court appearance, Aug. 1.