BOISE, Idaho — A judge in Idaho granted a change in venue request for Chad Daybell, according to court documents released Friday.
The decision comes after a nearly 5-hour long court hearing Tuesday where Daybell's attorney and the state were able to present arguments before the judge.
Daybell and his wife, Lori Vallow Daybell, are both facing several felony charges in Idaho, including murder in the deaths of Lori's children, Tylee and JJ. Chad is also charged with first-degree murder in the death of his first wife, Tammy.
Tylee and JJ disappeared in September 2019 after Lori moved them from Arizona to Rexburg, Idaho. In June 2020, their bodies were found buried on Chad Daybell's property in Fremont County, Idaho.
Tammy Daybell was found dead at the Daybell's home in October 2019. Originally investigators thought she died of natural causes, but later exhumed her body and now believe she was killed.
John Prior, Chad Daybell's attorney, filed the motion to change venues, in part, because of the media attention this case has received and the calls for justice for Tylee and JJ in the Rexburg area. He argued they wouldn’t be able to get a fair jury pool if the trial took place in east Idaho, where the children’s bodies were found in Chad’s backyard.
The court recommended moving Chad’s trial across the state to the Boise area, according to the documents. Prior said in the hearings Tuesday that this move would be his first choice.
In August, Chad Daybell waived his right to a speedy trial. The trial was originally scheduled for November 2021, but a judge agreed to push it back. A new date hasn't been set yet.
Lori Vallow Daybell's case is still on pause after a judge ruled she wasn’t competent for trial. She's currently under a 180-day health evaluation with the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.
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