A forensic pathologist testified on Wednesday that J.J. Vallow — who was found buried on his adoptive mother’s husband’s property in 2020 — was asphyxiated.
Dr. Garth Warren explained that J.J. was killed by a plastic bag being placed over his head and duct tape being put on his mouth. Warren said the boy also had abrasions on his arms and neck, according to East Idaho News.
“There was a white plastic bag over JJ’s head wrapped around his face multiple times with duct tape all the way down to the neck. The forearms and the hands were bound with duct tape and the ankles were found with duct tape,” Warren testified, per the news outlet.
J.J.’s autopsy reportedly took four hours. The pathologist also mentioned that the body was decomposed, which was evident by the color of his skin. J.J.’s clothing also had mold and dirt on it.
“There were also other areas that were concerning or suspicious – bruising on the ankles that may have been associated with the duct tape,” Warren said, according to East Idaho News.
J.J. and his sister, Tylee Ryan, 16, were missing for nine months before their remains were found on Chad Daybell’s property in June 2020. Lori Vallow Daybell is their mother, while Chad is her fifth husband whom she married after their disappearances.
J.J.’s body was reportedly found in a plastic bag that was wrapped in plastic. His face, arms, wrists, and feet were wrapped with duct tape. Tylee’s remains were discovered burned and dismembered on the property.
Lori and Chad are charged with the children’s murders. They are also charged with killing Tammy Daybell, who was Chad’s wife. She was also killed in Idaho in 2019.
Lori is currently standing trial for the three slayings. In Arizona, she is charged in connection with the death of her fourth husband, Charles Vallow, who was shot by her brother, Alex Cox, in 2019. Cox died, reportedly of natural causes, in December 2019 — though prosecutors have implicated him in J.J. and Tylee’s murders.
Lori said she was with Melanie Gibb, David Warwick, or her husband when her son and daughter died in her brother’s apartment in Rexburg, Idaho. Lori allegedly said she was at her residence, also in Rexburg.
Lori claimed she was in Hawaii when Tammy was killed at her husband’s home in Salem, Idaho. Lori stated she was with two other people at the time.
Lori — who is believed to have been involved in a so-called doomsday cult — allegedly told a friend that her children had become zombies and the only way to exorcise their bodies of evil spirits was to kill them.
Lori — who is not facing the death penalty — underwent psychiatric treatment twice before she was deemed fit to stand trial in Idaho. Cameras are not allowed in the courtroom per a court order.
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[Featured image: Tylee Ryan and Lori Vallow/Chandler Police Department]