The husband of doomsday-obsessed mom Lori Vallow pretended that he didn’t know her when police first came searching for her two missing children, newly-released court documents show.
Investigators conducting a welfare check on Nov. 26, 2019 found Chad Daybell outside of Vallow’s Rexburg, Idaho apartment with her brother Alex Cox, according to a probable cause affidavit for Vallow’s arrest.
Daybell “acted as if he didn’t know Lori very well and stated he didn’t know her phone number,” states the document, published by local outlet KHQ.
But he and Vallow had been married for three weeks when the encounter took place.
Investigators discovered photos of the Nov. 5 nuptials on a beach in Hawaii. Neither of Vallow’s children — Joshua “JJ” Vallow, 7, and Tylee Ryan, 17 — were in the pictures.
Meanwhile, Cox claimed that JJ was with his grandmother, Kay Woodcock, in Louisiana, the doc states.
Detectives noted that was unlikely since the grandmother had been the one to call in a missing child report about the boy.
Later in the day, detectives returned and spoke to Vallow, who said her son was staying with her friend Melanie Gibb in Arizona — and that they were out watching the movie “Frozen 2,” according to the affidavit.
When detectives spoke to Gibb, she denied that JJ was staying with her and said she hadn’t seen him since she visited Vallow in September.
During that visit, from Sept. 19 to Sept. 23, Vallow told Gibb that the boy had become a “zombie,” according to the probable cause affidavit for Daybell’s arrest.
Vallow — who is known to have been part of a cult with Daybell — believed that a “zombie” was a person inhabited by a “dark spirit” and that the only way to return a person’s true spirit to their body was by killing them, the document states.
Daybell had taught Vallow these beliefs, Gibb told detectives.
The boy didn’t show up for school on Sept. 23 and Vallow called the school district the next day to say he was staying with his grandparents in Louisiana and wouldn’t be back until October, the court filing states.
When police searched Vallow’s apartment in November, following their conversation with Gibb, they found no trace that a child had been living there — and soon discovered that Vallow and Daybell had fled Idaho, according to the docs.
Around the same time, detectives figured out that Vallow’s 17-year-old daughter Tylee Ryan hadn’t been seen since Sept. 8, on a trip to Yellowstone National Park — and expanded their search to include the teen.
Daybell’s parents, Jack and Sheila Daybell, allegedly told detectives that Vallow had described herself as an “empty nester” during a conversation in November.
Other relatives said Daybell had told them that Vallow had no children, the documents state.
Daybell was arrested last week after the remains of his stepkids were found buried in his Idaho backyard. He has pleaded not guilty this week to two felony counts of concealment of evidence.
Vallow was arrested in February after failing to notify authorities of the whereabouts of her children.
Both are being held on $1 million bail each.
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