An Idaho judge has ruled murder suspect Lori Vallow competent to stand trial after her initial Jan. 9, 2023, trial date was vacated pending her evaluation.
Vallow, who is accused of killing her two children and collecting their Social Security benefits in 2019, was scheduled to appear in court for a joint murder trial with her husband, Chad Daybell, who faces the same charges as his wife.
The court is now expected to reschedule Vallow’s trial date.
Fremont County Judge Stephen Boyce previously determined Vallow to be competent to stand trial in April after she spent nine months in an Idaho mental health facility.
Daybell, meanwhile, is asking for his trial to be severed from his wife’s, because Vallow faces the death penalty for her alleged crimes. The pair is at the center of not only the murders of Vallow’s two children, 7-year-old Joshua “J.J.” Vallow and 17-year-old Tylee Ryan, but both of their deceased ex-spouses, as well.
Tylee and J.J. were killed in September 2019. Vallow and Daybell have been accused of collecting Social Security benefits with their information between Oct. 1, 2019, and Jan. 22, 2020.
The children were missing for several months. Police say the couple lied about the children’s whereabouts and then slipped away to Hawaii before their bodies were found buried on Daybell’s property in rural Idaho.
The couple was indicted in late May 2021 on multiple counts each of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and grand theft by deception, first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder related to the deaths of Tylee; J.J.; and Daybell’s ex-wife, officials announced at the time. Arizona officials June 2021 also indicted Vallow in the July 2019 murder of her ex-husband, Charles Vallow.
The case has garnered national attention and inspired various crime television episodes and documentaries. Netflix most recently released the documentary series “Sins of our Mother” about Vallow and her life before the alleged crimes on Sept. 14.
Daybell has written several apocalyptic novels based loosely on Mormon theology. Both were involved in a group that promotes preparedness for the biblical end times. Meanwhile, Vallow reportedly believed she was “a god assigned to carry out the work of the 144,000 at Christ’s second coming in July 2020,” according to divorce documents that her late ex-husband, Charles Vallow, filed before his death.