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‘She Would Cut Me Up’: Ex-Friend Says Lori Vallow Once Threatened To Kill Her
"There would be blood and bleach and something about trash bags,” Audrey Barattiero testified. “She would bury me in a place nobody would ever find me.”
Audrey Barattiero, a one-time friend of Vallow Daybell, took the stand Wednesday at the Idaho mother’s ongoing murder trial in the slayings of her two children, 7-year-old Joshua “J.J.” Vallow and 16-year-old Tylee Ryan. Vallow Daybell and her husband, Chad Daybell, are charged with the murders of Tylee and J.J., who vanished in 2019. They’ve pleaded not guilty.
Barattiero told the Boise courtroom that she cut off the friendship with Vallow Daybell in October 2019. Prior to ending their friendship, Barattiero admitted on the stand that she had participated in “castings” — or prayer circles to expel “evil spirits” — that were organized by Vallow Daybell.
Barattiero told the court that her one-time friend made the death threat while staying at Vallow Daybell’s apartment in October 2019, according to the East Idaho News. While Barattiero was packing her bags, she claimed Vallow Daybell threatened to dismember her and hide her corpse.
"She said she would cut me up and wasn't in the mental place to do it but would get herself in a place to do it," Barattiero said in court, the newspaper reported. "There would be blood and bleach and something about trash bags. She would bury me in a place nobody would ever find me.”
J.J. and Tylee’s bodies were found on Chad Daybell’s property in 2020.
Prosecutors previously said Tylee had been dismembered and that her remains were later set on fire. Last week, a forensic pathologist revealed J.J. had died by asphyxiation. It was the first time the 7-year-old’s cause of death was publicly confirmed. The cause of death for Tylee remains undetermined.
Vallow Daybell’s defense team, however, seized on Barattiero’s explosive accusation involving the death threat, casting doubt on her credibility. Notably, Jim Archibald pointed out that Barattiero’s admission wasn’t raised during grand jury proceedings.
“Nothing of this sort was talked about,” Archibald said to Barattiero in court, according to the East Idaho News. “You want the jury to believe that you just didn’t make this last crap up?”
“I did not make it up,” Barattiero responded.
Ian Pawlowski, Vallow Daybell’s nephew-in-law, also testified about Vallow Daybell’s extremist religious views on the trial’s 21st day. He also told the court of Vallow Daybell’s obsession with “zombies” and “light” and “dark” spirits.
Prosecutors have alleged that Vallow Daybell and Daybell killed J.J. and Tylee in part over their fringe beliefs, which also included apocalyptic end-of-world scenarios.
Earlier in the trial, a Rexburg, Idaho, police detective recounted to jurors about the grisly moment J.J.’s decomposing body was found on Chad Daybell’s property.
"I saw a little boy in red pajamas," Det. Ray Hermosillo said in court. "He had a white plastic bag around his head. Several layers of duct tape from chin to his forehead area. His arm was duct taped with several layers. [His arms] were folded across his chest. His feet were also duct taped and bound."
Vallow Daybell is also charged with conspiracy in the murder of Chad Daybell’s ex-wife, Tammy Daybell.
Vallow Daybell faces life in prison if convicted in the murders of J.J. and Tylee. Chad Daybell will be tried at a later date.