ST ANTHONY – Chad Daybell pleaded not guilty Wednesday morning to charges connected to the deaths of three people.
Daybell, 52, appeared for his District Court Arraignment before District Judge Steven Boyce. During the hearing, Daybell entered a not guilty plea on each charge handed down last month by a Fremont County Grand Jury.
Daybell and his wife Lori Vallow Daybell are accused of various crimes, including first-degree murder for the deaths of Chad’s first wife, Tammy Daybell, 16-year-old Tylee Ryan and 7-year-old Joshua “JJ” Vallow — Lori’s two children.
In attendance at the hearing were three of Chad’s children, Garth Daybell, Seth Daybell and Emma Murray. They sat behind him stoned-faced while he spoke the words not guilty.
Colby Ryan, the older brother of Tylee and JJ sat in the courtroom gallery next to JJ’s grandmother, Kay Woodcock. The two held hands while tears came from their eyes.
Law enforcement, members of the public and the media were also in attendance at the hearing.
Lori’s case is on hold after Boyce put a stay or temporary pause on the case after a psychologist deemed her not competent for legal proceedings. On Tuesday, Boyce officially committed Lori to the Department of Health and Welfare for mental health treatment.
Wednesday marks the one-year mark since investigators found the bodies of Tylee and JJ buried on Daybell’s Salem property. He was arrested and been in jail on other felonies related to the case until the murder charges came down last month.
Daybell has pleaded not guilty to the following charges:
- Conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and grand theft by deception for the death of Tylee Ryan.
- First-degree murder for the death of Tylee Ryan.
- Conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and grand theft by deception for the death of JJ Vallow.
- First-degree murder for the death of JJ Vallow.
- Conspiracy to commit first-degree murder in the death of Tammy Daybell.
- First-degree murder in the death of his wife Tammy Daybell.
- Insurance fraud related to a life insurance policy he had on Tammy Daybell for which he was the beneficiary and received funds after her death.
- Insurance fraud related to another life insurance policy he had on Tammy Daybell for which he was the beneficiary and received funds after her death.
- Conspiracy to commit destruction, alteration or concealment of evidence related to the bodies of JJ and Tylee. (Previous charge)
- Destruction, alteration or concealment of evidence related to the bodies of JJ and Tylee. (Previous charge)