Lori Vallow Restored To Competence Again, Judge Orders Trial To Move Forward

Doomsday cult mom Lori Vallow’s competency has been restored once again and the trial against her for the deaths of her children will continue to move forward.

District Judge Steven W. Boyce issued an order Tuesday restoring Vallow’s competency, following a hearing to evaluate her mental state was held Nov. 9.

“The Court has now determined that defendant Lori Norene Vallow Daybell is competent and therefore fit to proceed with trial,” Boyce wrote in the order obtained by Oxygen.com.

The details surrounding the competency hearing have been sealed “to protect individual privacy rights and interests,” according to court records.

Boyce said Vallow’s trial will now be rescheduled, but he did not provide any timetable for when that might occur.

Vallow and her fifth husband, Chad Daybell, had been slated to go on trial together in January for the murder of her two children Joshua “JJ” Vallow, 7, and Tylee Ryan, 16, but that trial was suspended in October after questions emerged about Vallow’s mental health.

Lori Vallow appears in court.
Lori Vallow appears in court.

Lori Vallow Daybell, center, sits between her attorneys for a hearing at the Fremont County Courthouse in St. Anthony, Idaho, on Aug. 16, 2022. Photo: AP

Daybell’s attorneys filed a motion earlier this month to separate the couple's trials, arguing that that the two plan to offer “mutually antagonistic defenses” that would make it impossible for them to be fairly tried together, according to The Associated Press.

Both are facing first-degree murder charges in the deaths of JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan, who were found buried in shallow graves on Daybell’s Idaho property in June 2020 — months after they had disappeared.

The couple is also facing charges in connection of the death of Daybell’s first wife Tammy, who died in October 2019 at the age of 49. That was just weeks before Vallow and Daybell got married in Hawaii, according to court records previously obtained by Oxygen.com.

Vallow is also facing separate charges in Arizona for conspiracy to commit murder in the July 2019 death of her fourth husband, Charles Vallow.

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Her friends and family allegedly told investigators that in the months leading up to the deaths, Lori Vallow had embraced a bizarre set of religious beliefs and allegedly began to subscribe to ideas promoted by Daybell, a religious doomsday author.

According to those close to Vallow, the Idaho mom had voiced concerns to others that close family members had turned into “zombies,” a term she used for people who had been possessed by dark spirits.

Vallow’s competency to stand trial has been called into question before. Boyce ruled in May 2021 that a psychological assessment had found the Idaho mom was “not competent to proceed” and she spent nine months in a mental health facility receiving treatment before her competency was first restored in April.

It’s not clear what caused her mental health to be called into question again in October, but the case now appears to be moving forward.