Lori Vallow Daybell’s legal counsel reportedly rested their case on Tuesday without presenting evidence or calling witnesses.
The prosecution rested their case on Tuesday, giving the defense the opportunity to present their side. KUTV reported that after a private meeting, the defense announced that they would be resting their case instead.
Before the private meeting, the defense evoked Idaho Rule 29 — which is a Motion for Judgment of Acquittal. The defense is claiming that prosecutors failed to prove their case and wants charges dismissed.
Judge Boyce says the timing for making this amendment is "unbelievable" with the number of prosecutors working this case, and it's toward the end of the trial. "Disappointing that the court has to consider this" right now, he says. But — he allows state to change it. @KUTV2News
— Daniel Woodruff (@danielmwoodruff) May 9, 2023
Defense attorney Jim Archibald explained, “Under Rule 29, we are asking the court to review the evidence and determine if there is sufficient evidence on each count, including overt acts, to submit the matter to the jury.”
Prosecutor Lindsey Blake said that they have presented evidence which addressed all aspects of the indictment. She asked the court to deny the defense’s motion, and said that the case is ready for the jury once the defense presents their side.
“If we do not present any evidence, then that issue would be moot in any event,” Archibald responded, per East Idaho News.
State law indicated that the defense could present evidence if the court denies the motion after the prosecution rests their case. Idaho state law also says, “If the court dismisses an offense, the court must consider whether the evidence would be sufficient to sustain a conviction on a lesser included offense.”
KUTV also reported that Lori Vallow confirmed with the court that she will not take the stand.
Judge Steven Boyce said jury instructions will be ready on Wednesday and closing arguments will take place on Thursday.
Lori Vallow is currently standing trial for the 2019 slayings of her two children, Tylee Ryan and J.J. Vallow, and the murder of her fifth husband’s wife, Tammy Daybell. Her fifth husband, Chad Daybell, is facing the same charges but will stand trial at a later date.
Lori Vallow’s children were missing for nine months before their remains were discovered on Chad Daybell’s property in June 2020. 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. Ryan’s burned remains were on the property, though her entire body was not intact.
Prior testimony revealed that J.J. was suffocated with a plastic bag and duct tape. Ryan’s cause of death was undetermined due to the condition of her remains.
Lori Vallow has 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. She allegedly said she was at her residence, also in Rexburg. She claimed she was in Hawaii when Tammy was killed at her husband’s home in Salem, Idaho. She stated she was with two other people at the time.
Lori Vallow — 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. She underwent psychiatric treatment twice before she was deemed fit to stand trial.
This story is developing
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[Featured image: John Roark/The Idaho Post-Register via AP, Pool]