An American woman deeply involved in apocalyptic theories was found guilty Friday of killing her two children and complicity in the murder of her new husband’s ex-wife, in a case that shook the United States and inspired a Netflix series.
And a court ruling was issued convicting Lori Vallow of killing her 16-year-old daughter and her 7-year-old adopted son, whom she considered, according to investigators, to be zombies (the living dead).
Vallow, who believes in reincarnation, was prosecuted by a judge in the state of Idaho in the northwest of the United States, accused of involvement in the three murders along with her fifth husband, Chad Daybell, who wrote books on esoteric theories.
The couple, members of a Mormon extremist group preparing for the end of the world, were also prosecuted for fraud because they continued to take family allowances for the two children after they went missing.
Lori Vallow, who considers herself, according to testimonies, to be a savior of humanity, pleaded not guilty in the case, and she faces a life sentence without the possibility of parole, after she escaped the death penalty that the judge ruled out.
Her fifth and last husband, Chad Daybell, has not yet been tried, and he may face the death penalty in this state, which still approves this punishment.
This case, which shook the state of Idaho and the entire United States, began in 2019 when the two children were reported missing by the grandfather of one of them, without any communication from the mother.--
The investigation soon takes a horrific turn when the police notice a series of suspicious deaths among Laurie Vallow and her new husband. In 2018, her third husband, the father of the murdered boy, died of a heart attack, it was reported at the time. And in 2019, her fourth husband, from whom she was in the process of divorcing, was shot and killed by Laurie Vallow’s brother, who cited self-defence. The latter himself died shortly after, after he was found unconscious in his home.
Also in 2019, Chad Daybell’s ex-wife died of causes said to be “natural”.
Two weeks later, Laurie Vallow and Chad Daybell left Idaho for Hawaii, where they got married.
In June 2020, the bodies of the two children, who were last seen alive in September 2019, more than 9 months after they went missing, were found near Chad Daybell’s home in Rexburg, a small rural town in that state.
Lori Vallow, who was raised Mormon and radicalized over the years, believed she could communicate with angels. And in 2018, at a religious gathering in the (western) state of Utah, she met Chad Daybell, then head of an extremist Mormon sect preparing for the end of the world.
This story inspired a Netflix documentary series, Sins of our mother, which the platform launched last January.
Who are Mormons?
- A religious and cultural group started by Joseph Smith during the mid-19th century.
- The vast majority of Mormons are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and consider themselves part of the Christian faith.
- The cultural influence of Mormons is concentrated in the state of Utah, in the United States, and they make up about 61% of the state’s population and 1.7% of the US population.
- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had approximately 3 million members in 1971, and in 2018 it has 16.1 million members worldwide.
- Common Mormon practices include tithing, abstaining from premarital sexual relations, abstaining from work on Sundays, and proselytizing.
- The Church of Latter-day Saints forbids alcohol, and the majority of its followers do not drink tea, coffee, or anything that contains caffeine, nor do they smoke cigarettes.
- Some conservative Mormons forbid women to wear short skirts and pants.
- Mormonism encourages family bonds and the womb and gives them a special place. This is evident in devoting Saturday and Monday evenings to family reunions, and also encourages having children and large families, as well as encouraging generosity and hospitality.
- Mormons secretly practiced polygamy after a vision seen by the founder of the sect, and it is estimated that between 20 and 30% of Mormon families are polygamous, and practice it as a religious duty.