Doomsday cult mother’s trial begins in triple murder case [Boss Insurance]

Doomsday Cult Mother'S Trial Begins In Triple Murder Case

BOISE, Idaho – The investigation began about 29 months ago with two missing children. It quickly expanded to encompass five states, four alleged murders, and allegations of unusual apocalypse-focused religious beliefs involving “dark spirits” and “zombies.”

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On Monday morning, an Idaho jury will begin the difficult task of deciding the truth of these and other allegations in Lori Vallow Daybell’s triple murder trial.

Prosecutors have charged Vallow Daybell and her husband, Chad Daybell, with multiple counts of conspiracy, murder and grand larceny in connection with the deaths of Vallow Daybell’s two youngest children: Joshua “JJ” Vallow, 7 , and her big sister Tylee Ryan, who was last seen days before her 17th birthday in 2019.

Prosecutors have also charged the couple in connection with the October 2019 death of Chad Daybell’s late wife, Tammy Daybell.

The investigation drew worldwide attention and was closely watched in the rural eastern Idaho community where the children’s bodies were found buried in Chad Daybell’s yard. As a result, Seventh District Judge Steven Boyce moved the trial more than 200 miles (320 kilometers) east of the city of Boise.

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Both defendants have pleaded not guilty, but only Vallow Daybell’s trial begins on Monday. The cases have been separated and Chad Daybell’s trial is still months away. Vallow Daybell faces life in prison if convicted.

In this August 4, 2020, file photo, Chad Daybell listens during his preliminary hearing in St. Anthony, Idaho. Photo by John Roark /The Idaho Post Registry via AP

Eighteen hundred people have been called as potential jurors, and the pool has shrunk to 10 men and eight women in the past week.

All 16 will hear the case, but only 12 will actually participate in the deliberations to decide Vallow Daybell’s guilt or innocence. The other six are alternates and will be relieved of their duties before the start of deliberations. Jurors will not be told they are alternates until the time of deliberations to ensure that they all remain engaged throughout the trial.

The trial is expected to last up to 10 weeks.

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Prosecutors say the Daybells espoused strange apocalypse-driven beliefs to pursue their alleged plan to kill the children and Tammy Daybell to collect life insurance money and Social Security and survivor benefits from the children.

Police document detailed interviews with friends and family who said the couple led a group that believed they could cast out evil spirits with prayer and that they sought revelations “beyond the spiritual veil”. Vallow Daybell’s close friend, Melanie Gibb, told investigators the couple believed people became “zombies” when possessed by evil spirits.

This combination of undated file photos released by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children shows missing children Joshua Vallow, left, and Tylee Ryan. National Center for Missing and Exploited Children photo via AP /To file

The group spent time praying to get rid of the zombies and believed that if they were successful, the possessed person would physically die – releasing their trapped soul from “limbo”. Vallow Daybell referred to JJ and Tylee as “zombies” several times before their deaths, Gibb told investigators.

Idaho law enforcement officers began investigating the couple in November 2019 after extended family members reported the children missing. During this period, police said the couple lied about the whereabouts of the children. The children’s bodies were found buried on the property of Chad Daybell in rural Idaho.

The couple tied the knot two weeks after the unexpected death of Chad Daybell’s previous wife. Tammy Daybell’s death was initially reported as the result of natural causes, but investigators had her body exhumed after suspicions grew when Chad Daybell quickly remarried.