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'No one was murdered': Lori Vallow stated before being sentenced to life in prison

After victim impact statements, Vallow was offered an opportunity to make a statement - of which she accepted, elaborated on her experiences in the "spirit world."

ST ANTHONY, Idaho — Lori Vallow Daybell was sentenced Monday to life in prison without the possibility of parole on five separate counts after being found guilty on six charges relating to the deaths of her 16-year-old daughter Tylee Ryan, her 7-year-old son JJ Vallow and Tammy Daybell, the then-wife of Vallow's now-husband, Chad Daybell.

In a crowded Fremont County courtroom, Lori Vallow, 50, heard victim impact statements from pre-approved people that the sentencing judge deemed closest to - and most victimized by - the high-profile murder case.

Vallow's only surviving son, Colby Ryan, along with Kay Woodcock, the grandmother of JJ Vallow; Summer Shiflet, sister of Lori Vallow and aunt of JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan; and Vicki Hoban, Tammy Daybell's aunt, were permitted by Fremont County Judge Steven Boyce to deliver victim impact statements and address the court prior to Lori Vallow Daybell’s sentencing. Although approved, Ryan was absent from the hearing and opted to have his statement read by a representative. Vallow's younger sister, Summer Shiflet, did not attend the hearing. A last-minute impact statement was heard from Samantha Gwilliam, sister of Tammy Daybell.

Following the emotional impact statements from the victims, Lori Vallow was also offered an opportunity to make a statement - of which she accepted.

Vallow began her bizarre sentencing statement by quoting a Bible verse from the New Testament - before then proceeding with a story about her allegedly dying while in labor with Tylee in 2002. Vallow said that she "went to heaven" before returning to her body. She then claimed the experience enabled her to communicate with Jesus Christ and "have access to heaven and the spirit world."

Of the odd things mentioned throughout Vallow's statement, perhaps the strangest were her repeated mentions of JJ, Tylee and Tammy being "busy in the spirit world."

Lori Vallow Daybell's statement in full:

I would like to start by quoting John from the New Testament in the Bible. In John chapter eight verse seven Jesus says, "You guys without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her." Then in first verse 15. Jesus says, "You judge after the flesh, I judge no man. And yet if I judge, my judgment is true." Jesus knows me. And Jesus understands me. 

I mourn with all of you who mourn my children, and Tammy. Jesus Christ knows the truth of what happened here. Jesus Christ knows that no one was murdered. In this case. Accidental deaths happen. Suicides happen. Fatal side effects of medications happen. 

I have a different perspective in life. Because in 2002 when I was pregnant with Tylee, I died in the hospital. while in labor with her. They tried to stop my labor. They put me on the table, and they put something in my IV and I felt my spirit falling to the floor. I was standing near my pregnant body watching the doctors tried to revive me which took them a few minutes. In that time, my sister Stacy was standing to my left. I turned to hug her and was surprised that her spirit was as tangible as a physical body, because I knew I was in spirit, and she was in spirit. 

She said she needed to show me some things and we went to heaven. I later returned to my body. Because of this experience, I have access to heaven and the spirit world. Since then, I have had many communications from people now living in heaven, including my children Tylee Ashlyn and Joshua Jackson, my sisters, Stacy and Lolly, my aunts and my uncles and my grandparents. 

I have had many communications with Jesus Christ, the Savior of this world and our heavenly parents. I have had many angelic visitors have come and communicated with me and even manifested themselves to me. Because of these communications, I know for a fact that my children are happy and busy in the spirit world. Because of my communications with my friend Tammy Daybell, I know that she is also very happy and extremely busy. 

I have always mourned the loss of my loved ones and I have lost many in this mortal world. However, I know that more than most people, I know where they are now and what they're doing. I know how wonderful Heaven is and I'm homesick for it every single day. I know we all lived in heaven before we were born on earth, and we were all adults spirits in the heavenly realm. We chose to come to earth as mortals.

Heaven is more wonderful than you can possibly imagine. I do not fear death. I do not I did not want to return to my body when I was out of it. Even though my son Colby, who I adored more than anything, was only six years old at the time and I was about to give birth to this new baby girl that I wanted so badly. I was a young mother, and you would think I wouldn't want to leave my children but as I stood in heaven, I did not want to go back. I thought they would be fine without me because I was peaceful, and I was happy, and I was home. But then I was told by Jesus that I needed to go back and complete things that I had covenanted or promised to do before I was born. 

This caused me a lot of distress because I knew heaven was my real home. And I only wanted to be there. I was free from pain, emotional and physical. Then I was shown how I would help my children and others in the future. So ultimately, I did agree to go back to my body.

Tylee has visited me. She is happy and very busy. Tylee is free now from all pains of her life. Tylee suffered horrible physical, pain her whole life. I sat with Tylee in the hospital year after year after year, while she screamed in pain when the morphine wasn't even enough to take away the pain of her pancreatitis. I sat there while she cried, and I held back her hair while she threw up and I am the only person on this earth who knows how much Tylee suffered in her life. She had pain every single day. She never felt good. Her body did not work right; and I don't know if that was from complications from me dying or was us being born or something else, but she had a very difficult life. She was sexually abused by her own biological father since she was three years old, and she was forced by family court to go visit him for 10 years against her will. I fought for her in court. I protected her. I tried to protect her with my whole life. I tried to protect her. I worried about her every single day. Tylee had to get her GED because she couldn't go to school every day because she never felt good. She felt sick. Nobody knows this because Tylee, like myself, tries to put on a good front. Tries to be a happy person tries to have hope in life tries to know that she's here for a purpose and that she has an eternal purpose to be on this earth. But I never stopped worrying about her. 

One of the times that Tylee came to me as a spirit after she died, she said she commanded me, and she said to me "Stop worrying mom. We are fine." She knows how I worry and how I miss her.

The first time JJ visited me after he passed away. He put his arm around me, and he said to me "you didn't do anything wrong mom. I love you. And I know you loved me every minute of my life."

JJ. Joshua Jackson was an adult spirit. And he was very, very tall when he put his arm around me. He is busy, he is engaged. He has jobs that he does there, and he is happy where he is. His life was short, but JJ's life was meaningful. JJ was a wonderful person and touched the lives of everyone and I adored him every minute of his life. 

My eternal friend Tammy Daybell has visited me on several occasions. She came to bring me peace and comfort. And I know that she is extremely busy helping her family, especially her children and grandchildren. And I have a great love for Tammy.

My beautiful children, Tylee Ashlyn and Joshua Jackson rest safely this day in the arms of Jesus. My wonderful friend Tammy Daybell rests safely this day in the arms of Jesus and I look forward to the day we are all reunited, and I too will rest with them in the arms of my Jesus.

End statement.

Victim impact statements are delivered at sentencing. They are heard after a criminal conviction and judgement (in Vallow's case - a guilty verdict reached on May 12, 2023) and before the judge imposes a sentence upon the criminal. The sentencing judge is permitted to take into consideration what is heard in these statements.

After Vallow’s statement, Judge Boyce reiterated her charges.

Lori Vallow Daybell was convicted in May for conspiracy to commit murder and first-degree murder of two of her children, JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan – their remains were found on Vallow’s current husband, Chad Daybell’s, property on June 9, 2020. The remains of Tylee, 16, were found in charred, burnt pieces. JJ, 7, was found suffocated and bound in duct tape. Vallow was also found guilty of grand theft and conspiracy to murder Tammy Daybell, Chad Daybell’s wife at the time. A jury convicted Vallow in a six-week trial that ended May 12. 

You can read all of the victim impact statements on our website, KTVB.com.

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