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Judge rules Chad Daybell’s trial will be postponed

Daybell Case

ST. ANTHONY — The murder trial for Chad Daybell will not be held in January.

In a decision issued late Friday, District Judge Steven Boyce granted a motion filed by John Prior, Daybell’s attorney, to continue the jury trial to a later date. Prior said he could be ready for court proceedings, scheduled to begin Jan. 9 in Ada County, but due to “significant” amounts of evidence, he asked to have the trial delayed.

LISTEN: Several motions discussed in Chad Daybell hearing

“Despite the preparations the court has already taken at considerable time and expense (including multiple on-site visits and coordination efforts with Ada County, wherein counsel for the parties have also at times been present) to hold this trial in January, this trial must be vacated and continued,” Boyce wrote.

Daybell waived his right to a speedy trial last year, and Boyce said “the court must ensure the defendant has a full and meaningful opportunity to prepare a defense.”

The judge wrote that he will contact Prior and prosecutors to set a new date for the trial, expecting them “to have a full and complete understanding of what preparations remain…to avoid any further unnecessary delay in the administration of the case.”

Daybell and his wife Lori Vallow Daybell have pleaded not guilty to multiple counts of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder for the deaths of 7-year-old Joshua “JJ” Vallow and 16-year-old Tylee Ryan – two of Lori’s kids – along with Chad’s previous wife, Tammy Daybell.

The Daybells were set to have a co-joined trial at the beginning of the year, but Boyce suspended all matters in Lori Daybell’s case earlier this month until her mental competency can be determined.

Prior has filed another motion to have the trials severed and is expected to argue the reasons at a hearing in November.

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