REXBURG, Idaho (ABC4 News/East Idaho News) – New search history and purchase receipts from Amazon reveal Lori Daybell’s wedding ring in her marriage to her new husband, Chad was purchased before his last wife, Tammy died.
“When you think it can’t get any crazier, it does. I think if you were write this all out in a movie script and take it to Hollywood, they would reject it because it’s too bizarre. You can’t make this stuff up. They’d tell you to tone it down a little bit,” Nate Eaton, News Director of East Idaho News, told ABC4 News in a FaceTime interview Thursday.
As of Thursday, Lori remains behind bars at the Madison County Jail on two charges of desertion and nonsupport of dependent children. Her two kids, 7-year-old JJ Vallow and 17-year-old Tylee Ryan have been missing since September.
Lori’s last husband, Charles Vallow was shot and killed by her brother, Alex Cox in Arizona back on July 11th. At the time, Alex claimed self-defense.
A transaction receipt from Amazon confirmed by three sources close to the investigation by ABC4 News’ content partner, East Idaho News shows someone used Charles’ account to purchase a Sterling Silver Southwestern Style Malachite Gemstone ring on October 2nd. The order was under Charles’ name and shipped to Lori’s townhome in Rexburg.
“We know that Lori used that account often. She continued to use his account after he died,” said Eaton.
October 2nd is also a significant date in the investigation for two other reasons: It’s also the date when Lori was seen on surveillance visiting her storage unit with a man believed to be Chad. The couple was seen dropping off a tire and rear car seat.
Brandon Boudreaux, the ex-husband of Lori Daybell’s niece, Melani Pawlowski, was also shot at that same day in Arizona. Rich Robertson, a private investigator hired by Brandon, believes Alex was the shooter. Alex died suddenly in December, but autopsy results have not been publicly released.
The next day, website history on the same computer that the ring was ordered on also showed someone searching for wedding dresses the next day, according to sources close to the investigation.
Later that month on October 19th, Chad’s last wife, Tammy passed away from what was originally believed to be natural causes. Her body has since been exhumed from a cemetery in Springville, awaiting autopsy results.
Only 17 days later on November 5th, Lori and Chad got married in Hawaii. The Sterling Silver Southwestern Style Malachite Gemstone ring could be seen on Lori’s ring finger in their wedding photos.
“A lot of people think that this could solidify the prosecutor’s case that something was pre-planned before all of the events happened. I do know police have been aware of this Amazon transaction for weeks. They have this and evidence we don’t have,” said Eaton. “The wedding was definitely in the works by all appearances.”
Charles had previous stated in court documents that he “feared for his life” after Lori allegedly made concerning statements after meeting Chad, who is the author of several religious-themed fiction books.
He said Lori, at one point, claimed she was “a god assigned to carry out the work of the 144,000 at Christ’s second coming in July 2020” and didn’t want anything to do with her family “because she had a more important mission to carry out.”
Malachite, the mineral used in this wedding ring is often called the “stone of transformation.” It’s used in energy healings and was mentioned in a document allegedly written by Melani’s new husband – Ian Powlaski. Ian reportedly describes what Melani told him about Lori’s religious beliefs. Under one section he wrote, “malachite is said to have healing properties.”
Lori’s next court appearance is scheduled for May 7th. But in a motion filed Tuesday, her attorney, Mark Means requested oral arguments before Magistrate Judge Michelle Mallard concerning her bail. Means noted that “new facts have come to light” since a previous bond hearing.
“I know at least two bond companies have met with her face-to-face, before all of the coronavirus mayhem, because now no one can go in the jail,” said Eaton. “They told her, ‘We’ll bail you out if you tell us where the kids are, take us to the kids, or at least cooperate with law enforcement.’ That obviously put the ball back in her court and she didn’t go for that.”
Mallard recently took over the case after Means requested that Magistrate Judge Farren Eddins step down. He does not detail the new information in the court filings and a bond hearing had not been set as of Wednesday morning. Chad Daybell has not been arrested or charged with any crimes.
“I imagine in a few weeks when the preliminary hearing is held for Lori that a lot of this stuff will come out. It’s a lot of wait-and-see. A lot can happen between now and then. We’ve still got results from Tammy and Alex’s autopsies,” said Eaton.
He added, “A lot of people believe with the weather warming up, they might be able to go out and do some searches or digs in Eastern Idaho of where they think these children could be.”
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