Lori Vallow-Daybell’s lawyer Mark Means responded Thursday to a letter sent out by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints First Presidency to local leaders.
In the letter, church leaders stated:
“We remind leaders and members of a long-standing policy that Church leaders should not involve themselves in civil or criminal cases regarding members in their units, quorums or organizations without first consulting with Church legal counsel,” part of the letter says. “However well intentioned, Church leaders sharing information in legal proceedings can sometimes be misinterpreted and even damaging.”
The letter was released Aug. 4 with the subject ‘Involvement in Legal Proceedings.’ This was the same day Chad Daybell, Lori’s husband, was bound to district court.
Means stated that he finds the letter “troubling and disturbing,” and it “affects our guaranteed basic fundamental right of right to an impartial jury and the lawful and controlling presumption of innocence until proven guilty.”
The Daybell-Vallow case was not directly mentioned in the letter from LDS officials and is similar to previous policies sent to church leaders.
Mean's response was first drafted and sent to FOX 13 News Utah "in direct response to a FOX 13 investigation. You can reference the First Presidency letter and Mean’s response here.