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Jury trial dates set for Lori Vallow in death, disappearance of Idaho children

REXBURG, Idaho — Lori Vallow, the mother facing charges in the disappearance and death of her two children, will stand trial in early 2021, a judge ruled on Friday. 

Vallow appeared wearing a mask, next to her attorney, in a mostly-empty courtroom for a pre-trial hearing on the charges against her. Judge Michelle Mallard and prosecutor Rob Wood appeared via video conference. 

The charges

Vallow faces two counts of resisting or obstructing officers, criminal solicitation to commit a crime and contempt of court, all misdemeanor charges. Two counts of desertion and nonsupport of children were dropped earlier this month. She also faces a pair of felony charges on conspiracy to destroy, alter or conceal evidence. 

Vallow’s children, Joshua “JJ” Vallow and Tylee Ryan, disappeared last fall. Investigators serving a search warrant at the property of her husband, Chad Daybell, in June, discovered human remains later confirmed to belong to the two children. 

Mark Means, Vallow’s attorney, filed a motion earlier this week to indicate Vallow plans to plead not guilty to the charges against her. He requested a jury trial. 

Jury trial dates set for Vallow

At the pre-trial hearing on Friday, attorneys on both sides asked for six months to prepare for a jury trial for Vallow. Judge Mallard set the trial dates for January 25 – 29, 2021. 

Means also requested a bond reduction for his client, describing her as a model inmate. Prosecutor Rob Wood argued strongly against that, citing phone calls Vallow made from jail. 

“She was lying about the location of her dead child,” said Wood, “all while telling family and friends they were fine.” 

The judge lowered the bond to $50,000 on each charge, noting the nature of the charges and the time Vallow spent in jail while awaiting a jury trial. 

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