REXBURG, ID (3TV/CBS 5) -- On Saturday morning, Rexburg Police's Assistant Chief Hagen confirmed that the bodies that were found atChad Daybell's home in Idaho on Tuesday were JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan in a press release.
"During the search of the property, investigators found what appeared to be two sets of unidentified human remains. The remains were taken to the medical examiner’s office where an autopsy and positive identification was performed. It is with heavy hearts that we now confirm that those remains have now been officially identified as those of JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan."
Chad Daybell is the husband of JJ's mother, Lori Vallow. Daybell and Lori have been under investigation since the two kids went missing last September.
"We would like to thank all of the Law Enforcement officers involved, the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office, the FBI, family, friends and everyone throughout this community and across the country for their diligent and tireless efforts to find JJ and Tylee. It is not the outcome we had hoped; to be able to find the children safe. Our hearts and prayers go out to the families of JJ and Tylee."
Vallow is currently being held at Madison County Sheriff's Office Jail in Rexburg on $1 million bail for multiple felony charges including desertion. Daybell was arrested Tuesday after police served a warrant and found two sets of human remains on his property. Daybell is also being held on a $1 million bond for destruction of evidence.
"The underlying charge here is destruction, alteration and concealment of evidence and the allegation is that the evidence was human remains of two different people," the judge said during Daybell's initial court appearance on Wednesday.
New court documents filed after Daybell's hearing shows a motion for a special prosecuting attorney to be appointed, given the links between his case and his wife's case in another county, with "pending charges and future charges."
Family members confirmed to Arizona's Family that the bodies found on Daybell's property are those of JJ Vallow and Tylee Ryan. JJ would have turned 8 years old on May 25 and Tylee Ryan was 17 years old. Lori and Daybell always maintained that they were safe somewhere and their families believed it was all a misunderstanding and a custody battle.
"The medical examiner will be able to determine when they died and hopefully how they died, but the medical examiner is not going to be able to tell why," said Rich Robertson, who is a private investigator hired by the JJ Vallow's grandparents to find the children last year.
The medical examiner will perform autopsies on the children and hasn't officially identified them.
Robertson believes Lori's and Daybell's attorneys may try to blame the deaths on Vallow's brother, Alex Cox. He shot and killed Lori's former husband in Chandler last July. Cox claimed it was self-defense, but he died in December of natural causes. Robertson says Lori already harmed her defense because of her actions after her children disappeared.
"If Alex Cox would’ve been the one who killed them without Lori‘s involvement or knowledge, she would’ve been out looking for them for a month. Instead, she’s out telling stories and lying about where they were," said Robertson.
The Woodcock and Ryan families released the following statement Wednesday afternoon:
The Woodcock’s and The Ryan’s are confirming that the human remains found by Law enforcement on Chad Daybell’s property are indeed our beloved JJ and Tylee. We are filled with unfathomable sadness that these two bright stars were stolen from us, and only hope that they died without pain or suffering. Official statements from The Rexburg Police, The Medical Examiner and the FBI will be released soon. We ask that you respect our family’s privacy while we grieve - we have only just been told of the loss of our loved ones and need time to process. We are not granting interviews at this time and hope you all understand that this is the worst news we will ever get in our lives and want to be left alone for the time being. Thank You.
And the Cox family gave this statement:
The Cox family -- Janis and Barry, Summer, Melani and Ian -- is deeply saddened by the recent findings in the investigation into the whereabouts of J.J. and Tylee. Their love for them knows no bounds. The family has maintained a strong hope and belief that they were alive and well. With that hope and belief apparently shattered, they struggle to find comfort and hope in this potential new reality. They miss J.J. and Tylee very much. The family is very grateful to those who have expended so much time and effort in trying to locate them. The family expresses their deep and abiding love for J.J. and Tylee. The family will continue to closely watch the developing situation and will anxiously await the pending conclusions with heavy hearts. The family extends their gratitude to all those who have expressed their love and concern for J.J. and Tylee and feels the strength of their faith and prayers.