Chad Daybell to appear at last-minute closed motions hearing

Posted at 2:12 PM, March 7, 2024

FREMONT COUNTY, Idaho (Court TV) — With just weeks to go until his murder trial is scheduled to begin, Chad Daybell will appear at a closed hearing in his case.

A profile view of a man sitting in court

Chad Daybell listens during his preliminary hearing in St. Anthony, Idaho, on Monday, August 3, 2020. (John Roark/The Idaho Post-Register via AP, Pool)

Chad Daybell is charged with murdering his first wife, Tammy, and second wife’s two youngest children, JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan. The children’s bodies were found buried on his property in June 2020. Chad’s second wife, Lori Vallow Daybell, was convicted of the same charges and sentenced to life in prison. Chad is facing the death penalty if he’s convicted.

Prosecutors filed a series of motions this week and asked for an expedited hearing, because the trial is scheduled to start on April 1. The filings include a brief in support of excluding a defense expert in relation to a recording of Summer Shiflet, Lori’s sister. Similarly, another filing is a motion to exclude “Shiflet Recording and Prosecutor Wood as a witness.” Prosecutors also filed a motion seeking to introduce a statement from Tammy Daybell.

Court TV does not have access to the filed motions because they were filed under seal. On Thursday, Judge Steven Boyce ordered a hearing to be held on Friday but ordered that the hearing be closed because it “will reference information that is expressly exempt from public disclosure” and could jeopardize the defendant’s right to a fair trial.

Once the trial begins it will be broadcast. Judge Boyce ordered that the proceedings can be livestreamed, but will be broadcast using the court’s own equipment.