Lori Vallow case: What we know about the ‘doomsday cult’ murder case

It appeared each inch the fairytale wedding ceremony.

Wearing white with pink flower garlands round their necks, the bride and groom couldn’t have appeared happier as they exchanged vows on a paradise seashore in Hawaii.

Images captured the apparently blissful day as they toasted their nuptials, embraced and she or he danced to him enjoying the guitar.

However, behind the images, one thing rather more disturbing was occurring.

Her two youngsters had not been seen alive in two months.

His spouse of three many years – the mom of his 5 youngsters – had died abruptly simply two weeks earlier.

And her husband had been shot lifeless by her brother (who would additionally quickly be lifeless) not lengthy earlier than.

In the three years since the November 2019 wedding ceremony of Lori Vallow and Chad Daybell, a deeply disturbing story of suspected murders, unexplained deaths and apocalyptic cult beliefs about killing zombies has come to gentle.

In whole, 5 individuals near the couple have wound up lifeless.

Now, Vallow – infamously dubbed the “cult mother” – has lastly been dropped at justice.

On 12 Might, Vallow was discovered responsible of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and grand theft over the deaths of her daughter Tylee Ryan, 16, and son Joshua “JJ” Vallow, 7.

She was additionally discovered responsible of conspiracy to kill Mr Daybell’s first spouse Tammy.

Vallow faces a most of life in jail at her sentencing for these crimes on 31 July.

Joshua “JJ” Vallow, 7, and Tylee Ryan, 16, had been final seen alive in September 2019


Individually, Vallow is going through prices in Arizona for the murder of her fourth husband Charles Vallow.

It’s a weird and tragic case that captured the consideration of the nation, leaving many with one large unanswered query: how may a girl who for years gave the impression to be a loving, doting mom murder her youngsters in the perception that they’d become “zombies”?

That is only one of the questions prosecutors tried to untangle at trial as they revealed disturbing particulars of the investigation.

Right here’s what to know about the case:

JJ and Tylee’s disappearance and murder

JJ and Tylee had been final seen alive in September 2019 – not lengthy after Vallow had moved the two youngsters from Arizona to Idaho to be near Mr Daybell.

Chilling images captured a smiling JJ, Tylee and Vallow’s brother Alex Cox on a go to to Yellowstone Nationwide Park on 8 September.

The picture is now believed to be the final proof of lifetime of 16-year-old Tylee.

After that day, she was by no means seen or heard from once more.

Days later, on 22 September, JJ was additionally seen for the final time – at his college in Rexburg and by his mom’s buddies at her condominium that evening.

By the subsequent morning, the seven-year-old – who had autism – had vanished.

When requested the place he was, Vallow advised buddies Melanie Gibb and David Warwick that he needed to be taken away as a result of he was “being a zombie”.

Cellphone knowledge locations Vallow’s brother Alex Cox in the yard of Mr Daybell’s property in the hours after each of the youngsters’s disappearances. The morning after Tylee was final seen alive, Mr Daybell additionally despatched a textual content to his spouse to say that he had shot a raccoon and buried it in the pet cemetery on the grounds of their property.

The final picture – and recognized sighting – of Tylee Ryan (pictured with JJ and Alex Cox at Yellowstone Nationwide Park)


It might be many extra months earlier than investigators – and the youngsters’s determined members of the family – knew what had occurred to the two siblings.

JJ’s grandparents raised the alarm after they had been unable to get in contact with their grandson however Vallow refused to inform authorities the place both of the youngsters had been.

Based on Vallow’s buddies, she had claimed that her youngsters had been “zombies” and that the solely option to free somebody’s soul from evil spirits was to kill them.

In June 2020, the youngsters’s members of the family’ worst fears had been realised when JJ and Tylee’s stays had been found buried in Mr Daybell’s yard.

JJ’s physique was present in a black plastic bag wrapped in duct tape whereas Tylee’s physique had been dismembered and burned in a hearth pit, earlier than being buried in the pet cemetery.

The kids’s disappearance and deaths dropped at gentle a collection of different mysterious deaths related to the doomsday couple, revealing a sample of individuals near the pair dying abruptly.

Investigators discover the stays of the two youngsters at Chad Daybell’s property

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Earlier than the seek for JJ and Tylee shot to nationwide consideration, no connection seems to have been made.

As an alternative, two deaths that at the moment are alleged to be murders at the fingers of the doomsday cult couple, had been written off as self-defence – and even pure causes.

Charles Vallow’s dying: Self-defence or murder?

Two months previous to when prosecutors say Vallow and Mr Daybell murdered JJ and Tylee, Vallow’s brother Alex Cox shot and killed her husband Charles Vallow.

It was the morning 11 July 2019 and Charles had gone to his estranged spouse’s dwelling in Chandler, Arizona, to select up JJ.

Charles and Vallow had been married since 2006 and had adopted JJ – who was the organic grandson of Vallow’s sister.

Cox claimed that Charles attacked him with a baseball bat so he shot him in self-defence.

Police interviews with 16-year-old Tylee and a smiling Vallow gave the same model of occasions.

Charles and Lori Vallow pictured collectively. Lori is charged with conspiracy to murder Charles in Arizona


Nevertheless, Cox didn’t carry out CPR on Vallow and waited 43 minutes to name police. Investigators say that Charles was additionally already down on the floor when Cox shot him a second time.

Charles’ dying got here months after he had filed for divorce from Vallow, saying that he feared for the security of himself and the youngsters and that Vallow had threatened to kill him.

In February, he had pleaded with authorities to stage a psychological well being intervention for his spouse, warning that she believed she was a god making ready for a second coming.

Court docket paperwork reveal that he had additionally realized about Vallow’s relationship with Mr Daybell that June and had emailed Tammy with the data. He and one in all Vallow’s different brothers had been planning an intervention over her cult beliefs at the time of his dying – an intervention she is believed to have been tipped off about.

At the time of Charles’ taking pictures, the case was dominated self-defence.

Following his dying, Vallow grew to become a free agent however Mr Daybell was nonetheless married – for some time.

Tammy Daybell dies in her sleep

Mr Daybell married his first spouse Tammy in 1990 they usually had 5 youngsters collectively. Additionally they based a publishing firm collectively – the firm that launched his doomsday books.

Only one month after the youngsters vanished – on 19 October 2019 – Tammy, an in any other case wholesome 49-year-old, died abruptly in her sleep.

In a weird twist, her dying got here simply 10 days after she had known as 911 to report somebody taking pictures at her with a paintball gun in the driveway of their dwelling.

Regardless of the mysterious circumstances, her husband declined an post-mortem and her dying was dominated pure causes.

Tammy and Chad Daybell had been married in 1990. He’s now accused of conspiring with Lori Vallow to kill her


It was solely after the two youngsters had been reported lacking – and authorities started delving into Vallow and Mr Daybell, their sudden remarriage and weird cult beliefs – that questions started being requested about her dying.

Investigators exhumed her physique for an post-mortem in December 2020.

Tammy died “at the fingers of one other and died of asphyxiation.”

Vallow has been discovered responsible of conspiracy to kill her, whereas her husband is charged together with her murder, with prosecutors alleging that the couple conspired with Cox to kill the 49-year-old.

Alleged co-conspirator Alex Cox lifeless

The deaths didn’t finish there.

In December 2019, Alex Cox additionally died abruptly aged simply 51.

At the time, authorities had been demanding Vallow current her youngsters.

Tammy was about to be exhumed.

And Cox had killed Charles.

At some point, Cox was discovered gasping for air on the toilet ground of the dwelling he shared along with his spouse Zulema Pastenes – who he had married simply two weeks earlier.

Alex Cox died abruptly in December 2019 – two months after allegedly conspiring to murder the youngsters


The post-mortem discovered he had a blood clot wedged in the arteries of his lungs and his dying was dominated pure causes. Nevertheless the overdose drug Narcan was additionally present in his system.

Days earlier than his dying, Ms Pastenes stated he urged his dying could possibly be looming.

“Like one or two days earlier than he handed, he stated to me, ‘Zulema, if something occurs to me, I need you to know that there’s cash in a bag in the closet and it’s for you. It’s not a lot but it surely’s for you,’” she advised police, in response to courtroom data.

The day he died, he had additionally allegedly known as Mr Daybell to obtain a “blessing” over the telephone.

No prices have ever been introduced in connection to his dying.

The doomsday cult

At the centre of the string of alleged murders and thriller deaths stands the couple’s weird doomsday cult.

Mr Daybell ran a publishing firm that put out books about apocalyptic situations loosely based mostly on the theology of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

Vallow adopted his books for a while, earlier than the pair lastly met in particular person at a spiritual convention in Utah in October 2018.

At this level, investigators say their relationship grew to become romantic.

And as their relationship grew extra intense, so too did their apocalyptic beliefs.

Vallow claimed in divorce paperwork that Vallow believed she was a god-like determine chosen to hold out the work of 144,000 believers.

A number of buddies cited in police stories say that the couple believed they might drive out evil spirits and search revelations from “past the religious veil”.

Chad Daybell sits throughout a courtroom listening to in Idaho

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Vallow even believed she may teleport between Arizona and Hawaii, in response to paperwork.

However – most chillingly – the couple allegedly believed that folks, together with JJ and Tylee, had grow to be “zombies”.

They allegedly had a scoring system for rating how far individuals’s souls had gone from good to evil.

The one option to then rid a person of the zombies could be for them to die, in response to paperwork.

Prosecutors imagine that Vallow and Mr Daybell used these beliefs to additional their plots to kill JJ, Tylee and Tammy.

The fees

Vallow and Mr Daybell had been charged with the murders of Tylee and JJ in Might 2021 – nearly one yr after their our bodies had been found.

Prosecutors say that the couple conspired with Cox to kill the youngsters and Mr Daybell’s spouse each as a part of their doomsday beliefs – but additionally to gather life insurance coverage cash and the youngsters’ social safety and survivor advantages.

“All of those overt acts had been finished so Lori may finally be with Chad Daybell and reportedly full their mission right here on earth,” in response to an investigative report.

Lori Vallow Daybell glances at the digital camera throughout a listening to in Idaho in 2020

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“This perception system, lust and greed would additionally result in the deaths of Tylee Ryan, JJ Vallow and Tammy Daybell.”

In Arizona, Vallow can be charged with conspiring to murder her ex-husband Charles Vallow with Cox.

The Maricopa County Legal professional’s workplace annoucned that it didn’t cost Mr Daybell as nicely with Charles’ murder – however solely as a result of there’s “no cheap chance of conviction”.

The trial

The trial of the doomday cult couple stalled for the previous few years – partially as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, psychological incompetence and authorized wranglings.

Vallow has been behind bars since January 2020 when she was arrested in Hawaii and extradited to Idaho for failing to satisfy a courtroom order to current her youngsters to authorities.

Mr Daybell has been in jail since the youngsters’s stays had been found in June 2020.

The case was largely placed on maintain when Vallow was discovered not mentally competent to face trial. She then spent nearly a yr at a psychological well being facility earlier than she was dominated competent in Might 2022 and the case proceeded via the courts.

In March, an Idaho choose dominated that Vallow and Mr Daybell shall be tried individually for the murders – prompting Mr Daybell’s case to be pushed again to an unconfirmed date whereas jury choice started on 3 April in Vallow’s trial.

The dying penalty was taken off the desk for Vallow however not for Mr Daybell.

Now, following the jury’s unanimous responsible verdict on seven counts, Vallow faces life in jail for killing her youngsters and conspiring to kill Tammy.

She shall be sentenced on 31 July.

Her husband is ready to face trial subsequent yr.

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