Lori Vallow indicted on murder charge in death of previous husband Charles
Jun 29, 2021, 4:23 PM | Updated: Jul 13, 2023, 4:08 pm
PHOENIX — Lori Vallow Daybell has been indicted on another murder charge, this time in connection with the death of her previous husband, Charles Vallow.
A Maricopa County Grand Jury in Arizona indicted Vallow Thursday with one count of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.
#BREAKING: Grand Jury in Arizona charges #LoriVallow in death of #CharlesVallow, with 1 count of conspiracy to commit 1st degree murder. Info from @marcoattorney below:. @KSL5TV pic.twitter.com/Mp7LDCm8s1
— Garna Mejia (@GarnaMejiaKSL) June 29, 2021
The indictment revealed that on July 11, 2019, Lori made some kind of agreement with her brother, Alex Cox, that would result in Charles’ death, according to a news release from the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office.
That same day, police in Chandler, Arizona, received a 911 call from Cox. He claimed he shot and killed his brother-in-law following a confrontation with his sister Lori Vallow and told officers on scene that he (Charles Vallow), “Came at me with a bat.”
“The State further alleges that the offense charged in this count is a dangerous felony because the offense involved the discharge, use, or threatening exhibition of a gun, a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument and or the intentional or knowing infliction of serious physical injury upon Charles Vallow,” read court documents.
“The indictment against Lori alleges much more than a failure to act or a failure to stop Alex from killing her husband — it requires a conspiracy, it requires some knowledge,” said criminal defense attorney Greg Skordas.
Skordas, a former Salt Lake County Prosecutor is not connected with this case but has been following it closely. Skordas says Cox’s death in December 2019 may have delayed Charles’ murder investigation as everyone who witnessed his shooting is now dead, including the children, except Lori.
“A lot of the witnesses are no longer available — they’re dead. It’s been an investigation that has gone on for years, and the state of Arizona has had a difficult time putting together enough of the crime to get an indictment, but they’ve finally done that,” Skordas said.
Here are the charges Lori Vallow is currently facing:
- Charles Vallow — conspiracy to commit first-degree murder (Arizona)
- JJ Vallow — first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit destruction, conceal or alter evidence (Idaho)
- Tylee Ryan — first-degree murder, conpiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit destruction, conceal or alter evidence (Idaho)
- Tylee and JJ — solicitation, resisting and/or obstructing an officer, contempt (Madison County, Idaho)
- Tammy Daybell — conspiracy to commit murder
- Grand theft (Idaho)
Chad Daybell was indicted on the same charges, in addition to one count of first-degree murder related to the death of Tammy Daybell, his previous wife. Skordas said a case against him in Charles’ death is likely pending.
“I’m assuming the state of Arizona is always going to be investigating Chad. That investigation will continue and in fact, Lori may very well decide she doesn’t want to spend the rest of her life in prison and may testify against Chad, but right now it doesn’t appear the state of Arizona has a strong enough case … to get an indictment against Chad,” Skordas said.
Lori is facing 25 years to life in prison for Charles’ murder. The death penalty is on the table for the murder charges in the Idaho cases.
The Maricopa County District Attorney’s Office said they will give priority to the cases in Idaho as they were filed first, no hearings are currently scheduled in Arizona. When those are completed Arizona will begin the extradition process.
Spokesperson Jennifer Liewer told KSL, “Lori Vallow‘s case will need to be completed in Idaho before anything occurs in AZ. From there an extradition process will take place. The cases in Idaho were filed first, so they have priority over the Arizona indictment.”
In response to questions about a possible impact the stay in Vallow’s Idaho cases, following a psychological assessment, Liewer responded those evaluations have no bearing in Arizona. “Any mental health assessments in Idaho do not impact our case. Once the court matter in Idaho has been completed, the Maricopa County Superior Court process will take place.”
The next Idaho hearing for Vallow was scheduled for July 1, in the Tammy, JJ, and Tylee’s murder cases.