Mother of missing kids knows where they are or what happened to them, police say
REXBURG — Investigators say the mother of two missing children knows their location or what happened to them, and that they are not with her or her new husband.
In a Rexburg Police Department news release, detectives revealed new information Monday about the case and pleaded for Lori Vallow Daybell and Chad Daybell “to do the right thing and come forward with the information they have” about 7-year-old Joshua Vallow and 17-year-old Tylee Ryan, both children of Lori Daybell who have not been seen since September.
“We know that the children are not with Lori and Chad Daybell, and we also have information indicating that Lori knows either the location of the children or what has happened to them,” the release says. “Despite having this knowledge, she has refused to work with law enforcement to help us resolve this matter. It is astonishing that rather than work with law enforcement to help us locate her own children, Lori Vallow has chosen instead to leave the state with her new husband.”
On Dec. 20, investigators announced their search for Joshua and Tylee and said their disappearance is possibly related to the Oct. 19 “suspicious” death of Tammy Daybell, Chad Daybell’s former wife. Lori Daybell’s former husband, Charles Vallow, was shot and killed July 11 in Arizona. Police say Lori’s brother, Alexander Cox, pulled the trigger. Cox died Dec. 12, and investigators are looking into his death.
“We are aware that in the weeks after Tammy Daybell’s death, Lori Vallow/Daybell and Chad Daybell told witnesses that Lori’s daughter had died a year before the death of her father, which is untrue,” the news release says. “Around that same time, Chad told another witness that Lori had no minor children.”
Police “strongly believe” Joshua and Tylee are in danger and investigators say they have taken “every step available” to find them, including executing multiple search warrants interviewing multiple sources, and running down every lead.
“Many people have inquired as to why we have not filed charges yet in this case. Our primary concern at this point is simply locating Joshua and Tylee,” the news release states. “Charging decisions will be made in due course based upon the evidence available.”
The Daybells have been labeled “persons of interest” in connection to the disappearance of the children but have not been charged. Their attorney, Sean Bartholick, did not return immediate requests for comment Monday but in a statement to EastIdahoNews.com on Dec. 23, said Chad Daybell “was a loving husband and has the support of his children in this matter. Lori Daybell is a devoted mother and resents assertions to the contrary. We look forward to addressing the allegations once they have moved beyond speculation and rumor.”
Police ask anyone with information on the children’s whereabouts to immediately contact them and made a public appeal for help from Chad and Lori.
“We publicly call on Lori Vallow/Daybell and Chad Daybell to do the right thing and come forward with the information they have about the location and welfare of Joshua and Tylee,” the news release says. “This entire investigation could have been avoided if Lori and Chad had simply been honest with law enforcement.”
Joshua is a 7-year-old with brown hair and brown eyes. He is 4 feet tall and weighs 50 pounds. Tylee is a 17-year-old with blond hair and blue eyes. She is 5 feet tall and weighs 160 pounds.
Lori Vallow Daybell is 46 years old, and has blond hair and blue eyes. She weighs 125 pounds and is 5 feet, 6 inches tall. Chad Daybell is 51 years old, and has brown hair and blue eyes. He weighs 230 pounds and is 6 feet, 3 inches tall.
Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of the children is asked to contact the Rexburg Police Department at (208) 359-3000, or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) at (800) THE-LOST.