Prosecutors seek death penalty against Lori Vallow Daybell, ask judge to hold trials together
ST. ANTHONY — Prosecutors will pursue the death penalty against Lori Vallow Daybell and want her tried with her husband Chad Daybell in January.
In motions filed late Monday, Fremont County Prosecuting Attorney Lindsay Blake and Madison County Prosecuting Attorney Rob Wood say if Lori is convicted “for any of the counts of first degree murder and/or any of the counts of conspiracy to commit first degree murder,” they will seek the death penalty as a sentencing option.
Chad and Lori Daybell are charged with multiple counts of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder for the deaths of 7-year-old Joshua “JJ” Vallow, 16-year-old Tylee Ryan — two of Lori’s kids — and Chad’s first wife, Tammy Daybell. Prosecutors are also pursuing the death penalty in Chad’s case.
The prosecutors cited the following reasons why Lori and Chad Daybell are eligible for the death penalty:
- The alleged murders were “committed for remuneration” (financial gain).
- The alleged murders were “especially heinous, atrocious, cruel, or manifesting exceptional depravity.”
- The defendant exhibited “an utter disregard for human life.”
- The defendant has exhibited “a propensity to commit murder and will probably constitute a continuing threat to society.”
In a separate motion, prosecutors are asking Judge Steven Boyce to move Lori’s trial from October to January to coincide with Chad’s trial. The cases are currently conjoined but Lori did not waive her right to a speedy trial last month and legally must be tried within six months of arraignment. Boyce scheduled her trial to begin three months before her husband’s.
Prosecutors argue that witnesses and evidence in both trials are the same and it will be more cost-effective to hold them together as proceedings are expected to last ten weeks.
Chad and Lori Daybell have pleaded not guilty to all charges.