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Retired FBI Agent Not Surprised Daybell Details Slow To Emerge

LOGAN, Utah – Friday marked three days since local and federal law enforcement converged on Chad Daybell’s property outside of Rexburg, Idaho, and other than prosecutors disclosing two sets of children’s remains were unearthed, few official details had emerged.

Retired FBI special agent Frank Montoya said he is not necessarily surprised by how slowly information has come out about what happened, given how complicated the investigation appears to be and how tightly knit the surrounding community is.

“You’ve still got to prove it in a court of law, and so this is about sewing all those pieces together,” Montoya said.

Daybell was charged with two felony counts of concealing evidence and remains in jail on $1 million bail.

Lori Vallow was charged earlier this year with two counts of desertion and non-support of a dependent child. She remains jailed on a $1 million bail.

Her children, JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan, had not been seen alive since September.

Montoya said the forensics of the case alone will take time with several open questions there.

“Are there any indicators forensically of a violent death — cut marks, burns?” Montoya asked.

He also said detectives could be looking at deaths peripheral to the case of the missing children.

“What happened to Tammy Daybell?” he asked. “Was that a natural death or was she killed to further this scenario?”

Based on how quickly developments unfolded at the Daybell property this week, Montoya said he believed somebody is likely talking.

“It’s pretty specific,” he said. “I think it’s about a four-acre yard or a four-acre property. For them to be able to know where to start — otherwise, it’s a needle in a haystack — for them to know where to start, I think that points to specificity that is from a human being, you know — information from witnesses as opposed to technologies.”

With so many questions left to be answered, Montoya said he suspected the case might eventually prove to be simpler than it looks.

“I’ve seen this before where it’s a bizarre case, it makes no sense and then it comes down to something as simple as greed or avarice or, you know, selfishness,” Montoya said. “There’s no defending that — especially when it ends in death.”

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