Who is Chad Daybell?
Apr 3, 2023, 9:00 AM | Updated: Apr 4, 2023, 3:38 pm
The remains of those children — Tylee Ryan and JJ Vallow — were found on his property on June 9, 2020. He was arrested that day and was initially charged with “conspiracy to commit murder” in the deaths of the children with first-degree murder charges coming later, after he was in custody.
Tylee was 17 years old and JJ was 7 when they were killed. Vallow Daybell’s brother Alex Cox was with Tylee in Yellowstone the day before he visited Daybell’s property where her remains were later found.
Daybell was born in Provo, Utah and grew up in Springville, Utah, graduating from Brigham Young University after studying communication. Daybell and his brothers were profiled by the Deseret News in 1992 for their jobs digging graves in Springville’s cemetery, where Daybell was later a sexton. He was profiled for that career choice too, listing his duties as caretaker of the cemetery in proximity of the Halloween holiday.
“Sad times are always when you have to bury babies,” Daybell said while talking to a reporter in 2001. “That’s always a poignant moment.”
Springville employment records detail several stints working in the city’s cemetery before he resigned in 2014. His family moved to Idaho in 2015.
A college writer, Daybell published a book about his cemetery experiences called “One Foot In The Grave,” but also wrote personal memoirs that included what he called his near-death experiences.
He also wrote a series of books about the end times for a religious audience and was a prominent enough writer and podcaster to be called one of “15 amazing speakers” at a two-day conference in St. George. His self-published titles were still available on Amazon as of April 3.
While at BYU he married Tammy Daybell in the Manti Utah Temple in 1990 and the couple lived in Utah for most of their marriage. They founded a book company in 2004 and moved to Salem, Idaho, in 2015.
After Tammy Daybell’s 2019 death in Idaho, she was laid to rest in Springville, only three days later, where she moved when she was 13. She was married for 28 years before her death.
Chad Daybell married Lori Vallow in Hawaii less than three weeks after Tammy’s death. Seven months later, on June 9, 2020, the remains of JJ and Tylee were found buried in his backyard and he was arrested.
Initially, the trial of the two accused was meant to proceed together, using the same witnesses and evidence. However, an Idaho judge has since separated the cases. His trial date has not been set yet.
He faces charges of:
- First-degree murder for the death of Tammy Daybell.
- First-degree murder for the death of Tylee Ryan.
- First-degree murder for the death of J.J. Vallow.
- Conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and grand theft by deception for the death of Tylee Ryan.
- Conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and grand theft by deception for the death of J.J. Vallow.
- Conspiracy to commit first-degree murder for the death of Tammy Daybell.
- Insurance fraud for a life insurance policy he held on Tammy Daybell. He received payment after her death.
- Another count of insurance fraud