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Lori Daybell appears for first court appearance in Hawaii

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Posted at 4:08 PM, Feb 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-21 19:19:09-05

This story was originally published on EastIdahoNews.com and was written by Nate Eaton.

The mother of two missing kids decided to fight extradition in a hearing Friday afternoon in Hawaii while asking for a reduction in bail.

Police arrested Lori Vallow Daybell on a $5 million warrant Thursday for two counts of desertion and nonsupport of children, resisting and/or obstructing an officer, solicitation and contempt. After the hearing Friday, a Governor’s warrant must be issued to bring her back to Idaho.

Extradition hearings allow an individual fight if they are in fact the person identified in the arrest warrant. Hawwaii Judge Kathleen Watanabe asked Daybell if she understood this process to she said “yes.”

Defense Attorney Daniel Hempey asked bail for Daybell to be reduced significantly than the $5 million arrest warrant. Hempey raised several concerns over how the warrant came from Idaho and not Hawaii, meaning she deserved a lower bail.

“As such Hawaii law governs bail, not Idaho law,” Hempy said. “I would like to be asked to be heard on bail because we are sitting here on a couple felonies and misdemeanors on a half a million-dollar bail.”

With that Hempy asked bail be set at $10,000 while mentioning Daybell lives on Kauai with her husband Chad Daybell, remaining in the state since her attornies made contact with police in January. He addressed the couples weekend “vacation” to Maui saying defense attornies told police they would produce her to law enforcement when they wished to arrest her.

“Instead she was arrest and media was calling us all day,” Hempy said. “It seems like it was a made for media event at taxpayer expense.”

The defense argued the charges in Hawaii hold a typical bail around $10,000 to $20,000.

“They didn’t even need to arrest her,” Hempy said. “Mr DeCosta has been in contact with them (police).”

Kauai County Prosecuting Attorney Justin Kollar argued the claims, saying that abandoning her children qualifies as a serious crime in Hawaii, which bail can be denied in the Islands state if a serious risk the individual may flee.

“We are asking that Ms. Vallow be remanded without bail,” Kollar said. “She has already absconded from the jurisdiction where the underlying crime is alleged to have taken place.”

He argued Daybell’s charges indicate she is a risk to the public in addition to attempting to obstruct justice, all definitions as a denial of bail.

“She has no ties to this island other than a rented condominium in Princeville,” Koller said. “She apparently has resources to travel and leave.”

Those resources were indicated in court documents, saying Chad Daybell obtained $430,000 from life insurance on policy his wife Tammy Daybell who died on Oct. 19, 2019. The death came just two weeks before Chad and Lori Daybell married on the beaches of Kauai.

“If ever there was a case suitable, and you know our office doesn’t request this on a regular basis, that a person be denied bail,” Koller said. “This is the case that is appropriate for that.”

Watanabe sided with the bail set on the arrest warrant of $5 million. Another hearing regarding Daybell’s investigation is scheduled for March 2 at the Kauai courthouse in Lihue.

EastIdahoNews.com will stream the hearing live. You can watch below.