The case of Lori Vallow is one that inspires obsession: a twisted story with a serpentine timeline and a cast of characters that would give any of the Coen Brothers’ films a run for its money. As Nate Schweber reported for Business Insider, the ongoing courtroom trial has attracted its own unique cast of “trial pilgrims,” who have felt drawn to Boise, Idaho to get a glimpse of Vallow in court, who scribbles on her notepad as witnesses talk about her. (ICYMI: Vallow is the mother accused of first-degree murder of her children, 16-year-old Tylee Ryan and 7-year-old JJ Vallow, as well as conspiracy to murder Tylee, JJ and the wife of her now-husband, Tammy Daybell, who was married to Chad Daybell for 29 years. )
Retired professor of journalism here. Really appreciated your book. So many true crime reads fall down when it comes to providing context. Yours excelled.
Glad to have found (and subscribed to) your Substack. Very interested in your take on this trial. Good work, kiddo! Good reporting is rare and ought to be paid for.
There were two things that struck me about the Colby call with Lori. One, as you also noted, was that haunting, eerie laugh or cackle. Good lord. I'm not a religious person, but that sound was pure evil.
Two, Lori's reply to Colby when he says he would have gladly taken JJ and Tyler and taken care of them: She says something to the effect of, "Sure, everyone says that now." There is so much packed into that strange response.