Police reviewing investigation into death of Lori Vallow Daybell's 3rd husband

Lori Vallow Daybell at her initial court appearance in Madison County on March 6, 2020.

(Pool, File)

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PHOENIX — Authorities have confirmed they are reviewing their investigation into the death of Lori Vallow Daybell's third husband after an audio recording was recently made public.

Last week, EastIdahoNews.com shared the October 2018 recording of Daybell saying she "was going to murder" Joseph Ryan, her third husband, before she changed her mind. Ryan died of an apparent heart attack six months before Daybell made the comments. His sister, Annie Cushing, shared the recording in hopes that police would open an investigation.

"I think for them to continue to say he died of natural causes is reckless," Cushing told EastIdahoNews.com.

In the recording, Daybell explained how she would justify killing Ryan using scripture. Ryan is the father of Daybell's daughter, Tylee Ryan. Daybell went on to say that her feelings changed when she began attending a Latter-day Saint temple regularly.

"I did not have a murderous heart," Daybell said in the recording. "I just wanted to stop the bleeding and stop the pain. … I was like, 'I'm either going to turn my life to the temple, or I'm going to commit murder.'"

After EastIdahoNews.com and other media outlets posted the recording, the Phoenix Police Department issued a statement.

"The Phoenix Police Department has been made aware of the information and is reviewing the 2018 death investigation of Joseph Ryan," a police spokeswoman said in a statement to EastIdahoNews.com on Sunday.

Ryan's remains were cremated after his death.

Joseph Ryan
Joseph Ryan (Photo: Courtesy photo via EastIdahoNews)

In July 2019, Daybell's fourth husband, Charles Vallow, was shot and killed by her brother Alex Cox in Chandler, Arizona. Investigators also suspect Cox is involved in the disappearance Tylee and Daybell's 7-year-old son Joshua "JJ" Vallow. They were found buried on Chad Daybell's property in June.

Lori and Chad Daybell married on Nov. 5, 2019, on the Hawaiian Island of Kauai. The Daybells were both arrested and charged with crimes related to the altercation, concealment and destruction of the children's remains.

A jury trial for the couple is expected to happen sometime in 2021.

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Eric Grossarth


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