Chad Daybell’s Children Reveal Why They Believe He’s Innocent of Killing Lori Vallow’s Kids

Chad Daybell’s five children are standing by their dad after he was charged with murdering three. One daughter believes he was “framed,” while his son said “there’s still love” amongst them.

By Lindsay Weinberg Sep 01, 2021 1:23 AMTags
Watch: The Truth Behind Our Obsession With True Crime Stories

Chad Daybell's children don't believe he murdered their mother and the two children of his new wife. 

His five children broke their silence on their dad's alleged crimes during an upcoming episode of 48 Hours, "The Secrets of Chad Daybell's Backyard," airing on CBS on Sept. 1. In the interview, daughter Emma Murray remarked, "We presume innocence in this country. Just because things look funny, we don't send people to jail," CBS News reported. 

Their mother, Tammy Daybell, was found dead in her bedroom in Idaho in October 2019 at age 49. Chad married Lori Vallow just weeks later, leading investigators to question if he killed his wife and took the insurance money to start a new chapter with Lori, according to CBS. 

Adding to the suspicion was the disappearance of Lori's children, Joshua "JJ" Vallow and Tylee Ryan, who were 7 and 16 when they went missing in September 2019. Their bodies were discovered on Chad's property in June 2020. 

Chad, 53, and new wife Lori, 48, were charged in May with the murders of her children. He was also indicted for first-degree murder and insurance fraud over Tammy's death, per NBC. He pleaded not guilty to the charges. Meanwhile, Lori has yet to enter a plea after being declared unfit to stand trial. In June, court records obtained by E! News ordered Lori to be committed to a mental health treatment facility. 

Craziest True Crime TV Moments

His children are now speaking out, claiming he wasn't involved in any of the mysterious deaths. Emma alleged on 48 Hours, "He was framed." 

According to People, she continued, "This is his property. If there's bodies buried here, it would be attributed to him." 

JOHN ROARK/AP/Shutterstock

When correspondent Jonathan Vigliotti asked, "Who framed your father?" she replied, "I think it's pretty clear it was Lori and Alex," referring to Lori's brother, Alex Cox, who died in 2019 of natural causes relating to a blood clot, per NBC. Emma said Alex came and left for periods of time, and "we don't know... exactly what he was doing."

Son Garth Daybell recounted how the family discovered mom Tammy's body at home two years ago. "My room was down the hall. And I heard a thump," Garth shared, per CBS. "And heard my dad yell, 'Garth, Garth, come quick,' with the most panic I'd ever heard in his voice."

After finding her dead, they called 911. "My dad was just pacing back and forth," Garth said. "Just saying, 'Why? How could this happen?' Pointing at pictures on the wall, 'She can't be dead. Like, how could this be? What do we do?'"


Since their mom had poor health, his kids say they were the ones who declined to have an autopsy performed, not their dad. 

"The narrative is that he was going, 'No, no, no autopsy.' But he was standing there—in complete shock, traumatized, letting us make the decision," Emma said in the interview. "If he was trying to hide something, you—I wouldn't leave something like that up to my kids if I was trying to hide something." 

It was months later that her body was exhumed and an autopsy completed, which stated her cause of death as asphyxiated, according to Garth. 

Yet, son Mark Daybell believes that "doesn't necessarily mean smothered," he said. He went on, "There's more facts we need. We don't just say, 'Oh, well, bye, Chad.' No there's still love, there's still connection."

According to CBS News, the kids are "steadfast" in believing their father's innocence and feel "there has been a rush to judgement," as the outlet wrote.

Idaho prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Chad. 

Watch a teaser of the 48 Hours episode above.