Here’s why separate trials for Chad and Lori Daybell is significant

Mar 3, 2023, 1:04 PM | Updated: Apr 3, 2023, 5:52 pm

After months of requests a judge granted a motion for separate trials for Chad Daybell and Lori Val...

FILE: Lori Vallow Daybell (L) Chad Daybell (R) (Rexburg Police Department


ST. ANTHONY, Idaho– After months of requests a judge has granted a motion for separate trials for Chad Daybell and Lori Vallow Daybell. 

Chad and Lori Vallow Daybell both face charges of murder and conspiracy in the deaths of Lori’s two kids, JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan, as well as the death of Chad’s ex-wife, Tammy Daybell.

Related: Attorneys for Lori Vallow Daybell file motion for her to meet with husband

According to East Idaho News, District Judge Steven Boyce ruled that the cases should be separated because of new DNA evidence that was just presented.

The defense argued that there wouldn’t be enough time to review the evidence before the April 3 trial date.

Why this is significant

Attorney and KSL Legal Analyst Greg Skordas said this will greatly impact how the prosecution prepares for the case. 

“Having two trials is really just doubling the workload of the prosecution,” Skordas said. “They have to put on the same or very similar evidence in two different trials … it’s a tough use of resources.”

Skordas also said two separate trials could really give an edge to Chad Daybell’s defense.

“Chad’s attorneys get a free snapshot of the entire state’s case,” Skordas said. “(That includes) the strengths and weaknesses … how witnesses respond under direct- and cross-examination.”

Skordas also said if Lori was convicted for the alleged crimes before Chad’s trial begins, it makes it more likely that Chad’s defense will try to place more blame on her.

And Skordas is skeptical about the new DNA evidence since it’s been nearly two years since charges were first filed against the Daybells. 

“With the resources states have now, it should not have taken this long for the government to produce that,” Skordas said. “It’s certainly problematic.”

Since Lori has not waived her right to a speedy trial, she is still set to be tried next month. Chad’s new trial date has not been set.

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Here’s why separate trials for Chad and Lori Daybell is significant