Monday, June 17, 2024
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Jurors continue deliberating the death penalty for Chad Daybell



BOISE — The same 12 jurors who found Chad Daybell guilty of all charges against him on Thursday are continuing to deliberate on Saturday over whether he deserves the death penalty.

They deliberated for almost six hours on Friday before deciding to stop for the night before 8 p.m. The jurors will begin deliberating again at 9 a.m. on Saturday.

On Friday, jurors listened to statements from family members of each of the victims, including Joshua “JJ” Vallow’s grandmother, Tylee Ryan’s older brother and aunt, Tammy Daybell’s father and multiple siblings of Tammy Daybell.

The statements brought some of the jurors to tears after weeks of hearing about the three deaths through witnesses.


KSL.com will be streaming the verdict when it is reached


Colby Ryan, Tylee’s older brother, said he has lost his entire family and is now without a mother, father, sister or brother. He said the impact of losing his siblings is “like a nuclear bomb dropping.”

“I lost the ability to watch Tylee and JJ grow up. I lost my relationship with my little brother which took years to build. … I lost the ability to sit with my little sister and talk and share our lives. So, in short, I lost everything I’ve ever known,” he said.

Matthew Douglas, Tammy Daybell’s brother, said she was “the emotional heart and glue” of his siblings, and these events destroyed their family as they knew it.

He called it a “never-ending nightmare,” and said every time he felt some control around the grief of his sister’s death, something new came — Chad Daybell was remarried, Tammy Daybell’s body was exhumed or there were missing children.

He said he felt like he was being tossed in a “cheap holiday snow globe” where everything was loose.

Douglas also said it hurt that some of the children of Chad and Tammy Daybell cut off ties with the Douglas family, choosing to defend their father.

Chad Daybell chose not to present any mitigation evidence during the sentencing phase of his trial and confirmed he understood his attorney, John Prior, had prepared for that. He also chose not to make an allocution statement. An allocution statement is when a defendant is given a chance to speak before their sentence is decided.

It was unknown whether he made that decision against the advice of Prior, who still argued on behalf of his client.

Prior argued Lori Daybell changed who Chad Daybell was and called her a “bomb” that brought chaos to his life. He said after meeting her was when the “crazy thoughts” and “amplification of these religious beliefs” in Chad Daybell began.

Prior said most of the allegations in the charges relate to her, and the ones that relate to Chad Daybell’s actions are all about religious beliefs. Prior said Chad Daybell was not present when the children were killed but that others were.

Fremont County prosecutor Lindsay Blake said each of the deaths occurred shortly after a source of money from them was set up, Social Security payments for the children and life insurance for Tammy Daybell.

She said Chad Daybell manipulated people around them with the goal of living on a tropical island with Lori Daybell. He taught others that he could mark people for death and determine when they would die.

“It didn’t matter the age of the victim or who relied on them and loved them. If they were in the way of Chad and his plan … or if there was money to be gained for Lori and Chad, those individuals were marked for death,” she said.



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