Editor's Note: An earlier version gave the wrong year for Charles Vallow's death. The date has been corrected.
A probable cause affidavit filed in the Arizona case against Lori Vallow for conspiracy to murder her previous husband reveals more details on the events leading up to Charles Vallow’s death.
The affidavit, which was posted online by KTVB7, also reveals more details on Lori Vallow’s religious beliefs, including that she thought she was a goddess tasked with preparing 144,000 people for the end of the world.
Text messages shared in the documents reportedly indicate that Charles Vallow’s death was planned, that she and others believed he had already died and his body was possessed by a spirit referred to as “Ned,” or “Hiplos.”
According to the affidavit, Charles and Lori separated after Lori accused Charles of infidelity. During this separation, Lori reportedly disappeared for two months, leaving J.J. Vallow with his father.
Charles reportedly filed a mental health petition requesting Lori be evaluated after she returned and shared her belief that she was to save 144,000 people.
“In this petition, Charles talked about how Lori had told him that he was possessed by a dark spirit by the name of Ned Schneider,” The affidavit states. “Lori would even refer to Charles in conversation and documentation by the name of Ned.”
Further investigation into Lori Vallow’s beliefs by several law enforcement offices revealed Chad Daybell was destined to help Lori. Daybell and Lori Vallow believed they had “extraordinary abilities,” including teleportation, powers to harm others, that they could cause natural disasters, pray away demonic spirits and had “visionary capabilities.”
Daybell and Lori Vallow thought they could also tell if someone had a “dark” or “light” scale associated with them. Those with a dark scale were possessed by demonic spirits. They would refer to those people as “zombies” and call them by the name of the spirit, rather than their actual name.
“Coincidentally, if you shared their belief system, your score was favorable,” the affidavit states. “If you offered any opposition to their belief or their destiny, you were seen as possessed.”
Lori’s brother, Alex Cox, shot and killed Charles Vallow on July 11, 2019. He told Chandler Police Department officers it was in self-defense and that he had fired two shots as Charles charged him.
A police investigation found this was only true of one of the shots Cox fired. The second shot entered through Charles Vallow’s rib cage and exited through his upper left shoulder. The affidavit states this indicates Charles Vallow was on the floor the second time he was shot.
Lori Vallow and Cox told police she was taking the children outside when Cox shot Charles Vallow. GPS data shows, however, that Lori had Charles’ cellphone and drove his rental car, around 7:49 a.m. Cox called 911 to report the shooting at 8:32 a.m., 43 minutes after the shooting is believed to have occurred.
Text messages discovered during the investigations into the deaths surrounding Daybell and Lori Vallow reveal Lori had discussed her husband’s death with several people before he died.
In January 2019, Lori Vallow claimed her husband was blocking her “gifts” in text messages to Cox’s wife. They reportedly discussed plans to harm “Hiplos,” though much of that section of the affidavit is redacted.
On June 21, 2019 Lori Vallow’s web history reportedly showed that she searched for information on Social Security benefits.
On July 18, 2019, a week after Charles Vallow’s death, Lori reportedly texted Daybell.
“So I talked to the insurance company,” Lori texted. “He changed it in March. So it was probably Ned before we got rid of him. They can’t tell me to who of course but it’s done. I’ll still get the 4000 a month from SS.”
On June 29, 2019, Charles discovered a letter Lori wrote in his name asking Daybell to come to Arizona to help him write a book. Charles reportedly told Lori to come clean about her relationship with Daybell, and that if she did not he would contact Tammy Daybell, Chad’s wife.
Charles Vallow then reportedly started talking with a person whose name was redacted in court records about performing an intervention in Lori’s religious practices.
Lori reportedly learned of the intervention on July 9, 2019 and contacted her brother. He stayed close and was present on July 11 when Charles Vallow appeared to pick up J.J. Vallow.
“Based on this investigation, it has been proven how valuable that Alex Cox was to Lori,” the affidavit states. “His mission on this earth was to protect his sister.”
Cox died on Dec. 11, shortly after Daybell and Lori Vallow fled to Hawaii in response to police inquiries about the location of J.J. Vallow and Tylee Ryan, Lori’s daughter. The children were found buried on Chad Daybell’s property in June 2020.