Lori Vallow's best friend calls 'cult' mom 'misleading and manipulative', telling Chad Daybell's first court hearing how the couple 'asked her to lie to police about missing son JJ's whereabouts' before he was found dead with his sister Tylee

Lori Vallow's best friend labelled her 'misleading and manipulative' during the first court hearing for the the 'cult' mom's doomsday preacher husband Monday.   
Chad Daybell faces charges over the deaths of Vallow's children Tylee, 17, and JJ, seven. On Monday Vallow's friend Melanie Gibb told the court how the couple 'asked her to lie to police about missing son JJ's whereabouts' before he was found dead. 
The testimony came during a preliminary hearing where a judge will decide whether there is enough evidence to hold Daybell for trial. Both Daybell and Vallow have both been charged with concealing evidence by hiding or disposing of the children's bodies. 
The kids vanished in September last year. Their bodies were discovered in June on a property owned by Daybell. It remains unclear how they died and prosecutors have not charged either Daybell or Vallow with murder. When police came to her house in November last year Vallow told them: 'I look like a suspect, but I’m a good person.'
Months after they vanished, Lori's brother Alex Cox also died in mysterious circumstances. Police traced his cell phone data to get to the children's bodies. Police bodycam showed Vallow telling officers: 'It is very weird. I’ve had to move around a lot. One of my brothers is trying to kill me. Not the brother that lives here, obviously. He’s kind of my protector. My other brother was in with my husband, who was trying to kill me for my $2 million life insurance policy.'
The first witness on Monday was Detective Ray Dennis Hermosillo from the Rexburg City PD. He described finding JJ's body covered in duct tape, dressed in red pajamas and wearing black socks.
Lori's friend Gibb later gave evidence, telling the court she visited Vallow the week JJ disappeared in September 2019. Gibb said she saw JJ in the home but that Vallow told her JJ 'was acting with a lot of energy' and that he would be going to live with his gran, Kay Woodcock. Gibb said she did not see Tylee that weekend. 
Gibb then told the court she then received a call from Daybell two months later, at the end of November, telling her to not answer the phone to Rexburg police because Lori 'was going to tell the police that JJ was with her'.
Chad Daybell in court in Idaho on Monday morning for the first day of his preliminary hearing
Chad Daybell in court in Idaho on Monday morning for the first day of his preliminary hearing
Lori Vallow is also in custody
Lori's kids JJ, 7, and Tylee, 17, vanished in September Their bodies were found earlier this summer
Lori Vallow is also in custody. Her kids JJ, 7, and Tylee, 17, vanished in September Their bodies were found earlier this summer
Gibb detailed how she received the call from Daybell asking her to not pick up the phone to Rexburg police. 
She said: 'I was in shock. I asked him if he was nervous and he said yes. Within an hour or two I heard from Lori.' Gibb said Vallow then told her 'everything is fine', adding: 'She was upbeat cheery, acting like nothing was wrong.'
Gibb said Vallow explained she had 'told the police I had JJ'. Vallow is said to have lied to cops, telling them her young son was at the movies watching Frozen with Melanie, according to Gobb. 
She added: 'She asked me to take a random picture of kids to make it look like it was JJ. She said she was trying to protect JJ from Kay [his grandmother] and family members.  
'I felt horrible, in shock, not ok with it. She told something to the police which was not true. I had a really bad feeling in my stomach and was shook up by it.'

Gibb said she did lie for the couple, telling police she had been with JJ but that he 'was back with Lori'. She added: 'Lori tells me her child is in danger. I'm very confused. Lori was misleading and manipulating me. She was tying to convince me that she and he was in danger. I was perplexed, I did not know what to do.' 
The court then heard an audio recording, taken by Gibb, in which she asks Chad & Lori why she was told her JJ was with his grandmother. The couple tell Melanie JJ 'is safe and he’s happy' and it was to 'protect' him. 
Lori is heard telling her friend: 'I know exactly where he is. He’s perfectly fine and safe.' She adds: 'I’m sorry you’re friends with all those who are against me.' 
On June 10, officers were searching Daybell's property where Hermosillo said he noticed a '4ft x 2ft area of sod' that stuck out'. He said they dug up the soil, found three large white rocks and then panels of wood.
Once they were removed, he said he was hit with the stench of a decomposing body. 'There was a black, what I can best describe as a plastic bag with a round object protruding through the dirt,' he said. 
Officers cut through the plastic bag and saw JJ's hair, he said. 'It appeared to be a small body, tightly wrapped in black plastic, covered in duct tape,' he said.  
Prosecutors detail evidence in Daybell case
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Lori's friend Melanie Gibb, pictured, gave evidence Monday afternoon
Lori's friend Melanie Gibb, pictured, gave evidence Monday afternoon 
JJ Vallow's grandpa Larry Woodcock breaks down in tears during evidence Monday
JJ Vallow's grandpa Larry Woodcock breaks down in tears during evidence Monday 
He told the court how he was asked to perform a search warrant at their home in November after being contacted by JJ's grandparents. 
Daybell, he said, told him JJ was with his grandparents and that he did not have the phone number for them.
Lori's brother Alex Cox (pictured) died in December, months after he shot dead his brother-in-law Charles
Lori's brother Alex Cox (pictured) died in December, months after he shot dead his brother-in-law Charles
'I thought it as suspicious because I thought they had been close, based on my initial investigation. I asked Mr daybell if he had Lori Vallow's phone number, he gave it. 
'He stated that he felt like I was accusing him of something,' he said. 
He then said he tried to make contact with Lori but that she didn't answer. He tracked her down to an apartment but there was no sign of the children. 
Hermosillo said officers then trailed Lori and Chad for months, to Hawaii, and eventually brought them back to the US. 
The court also heard a recording of bodycam footage taken in November when Lori told police that JJ was being looked after by a friend of hers in Arizona. 
She claimed she had 'a brother' - not thought to be Alex Cox - who she said was trying to 'kill her'.
Vallow told the officers: 'I have people looking for me and I don’t want to be found'. 
In this aerial photo, investigators search for human remains at Chad Daybell's residence in the 200 block of 1900 East in Salem, Idaho on June 9
In this aerial photo, investigators search for human remains at Chad Daybell's residence in the 200 block of 1900 East in Salem, Idaho on June 9
Detective Ray Dennis Hermosillo from the Rexburg City PD was the first to take the stand
Detective Ray Dennis Hermosillo from the Rexburg City PD was the first to take the stand
The remains of Lori's children Tylee Ryan (left) and Joshua 'JJ' Vallow (right) were discovered on the property of her husband Chad Daybell on June 9 - nine months after they went missing
The remains of Lori's children Tylee Ryan (left) and Joshua 'JJ' Vallow (right) were discovered on the property of her husband Chad Daybell on June 9 - nine months after they went missing 
Daybell late last year married the kids´ mom, Lori Vallow Daybell, who's charged with conspiring to help him keep the bodies hidden and faces the same hearing next week. 
Both have pleaded not guilty. 
Court documents suggest JJ was buried in a pet cemetery on Chad Daybell´s property and that Tylee´s remains were dismembered and burned. Investigators found the bodies by tracking the movements of Lori´s brother, Alex Cox, using cellphone data.
Cox is also dead, succumbing to an apparent blood clot in his lung at his Arizona home last December. Police Lt. Ron Ball in the small town of Rexburg, Idaho, wrote in court documents that Cox also was involved in the conspiracy to hide the kids´ remains.
Court documents in Lori Daybell´s criminal case include claims that the couple believed dark spirits, or 'zombies,' would possess people. 
Melanie Gibb said her friend Lori told her at different times last year that both children had become zombies and that the couple believed the only way to rid a person of a dark spirit was by killing them so the person could be at rest in the afterlife.  
Charles Vallow - JJ's adoptive father - was married to Lori for more than a decade before he filed for divorce from her in February 2019. In court documents he claimed that Lori had become obsessed with the end of the world and had threatened to kill him
Charles Vallow - JJ's adoptive father - was married to Lori for more than a decade before he filed for divorce from her in February 2019. In court documents he claimed that Lori had become obsessed with the end of the world and had threatened to kill him
The strange case began last summer after Cox fatally shot Lori Vallow’s estranged husband, Charles Vallow, in suburban Phoenix in what he asserted was self-defense. Vallow had been seeking a divorce, saying Lori believed she had become a god-like figure who was responsible for ushering in the biblical end times.
A short time later, she and the kids moved to Idaho, where Chad Daybell lived. He ran a small publishing company and had written many fiction books about apocalyptic scenarios loosely based on the theology of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Friends said he claimed to be able to receive visions from 'beyond the veil'. 
At the time, Chad Daybell was married to Tammy Daybell. She died in October of what her obituary said were natural causes. Authorities grew suspicious when he married Lori Vallow just two weeks later. Police had Tammy’s body exhumed last December in Utah for further investigation; the results of that autopsy have not been released.
Police began searching for Tylee and JJ in November after relatives raised concerns, and they soon discovered that both children were last seen in September.
Chad Daybell’s defense attorney, John Prior, also will get a chance to argue his side during the hearing, that is expected to continue Tuesday. Neither the couple nor their lawyers have spoken publicly about the case.
In most preliminary hearings, defense attorneys try to show the judge that prosecutors’ evidence is not strong enough to justify sending the case to trial. 
Lori Vallow's best friend calls 'cult' mom 'misleading and manipulative', telling Chad Daybell's first court hearing how the couple 'asked her to lie to police about missing son JJ's whereabouts' before he was found dead with his sister Tylee Lori Vallow's best friend calls 'cult' mom 'misleading and manipulative', telling Chad Daybell's first court hearing how the couple 'asked her to lie to police about missing son JJ's whereabouts' before he was found dead with his sister Tylee Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 03:13 Rating: 5

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