LIHU‘E — Lori Vallow is going back to Idaho to face two felony counts of child abandonment.
That was decided in a Wednesday hearing in Fifth District Court in Lihu‘e, one that was scheduled so Vallow’s attorneys could ask Judge Kathleen Wantanabe to reconsider the $5 million bail set for the mom of two missing children from Idaho. At the hearing, Vallow waived her right to an extradition hearing and confirmed her identity, meaning she’s headed back to Idaho to face charges.
On Wednesday, Wantanabe refused the request to reconsider bail, and kept it at the current $5 million.
Vallow was arrested in Princeville last week on an Idaho warrant. She’s currently at Kaua‘i Community Correctional Center.
Vallow’s attorney, Craig De Costa, from the law firm De Costa Hempey, argued bail should be reduced because Vallow has been cooperating with authorities and that a reduction in bail would bring it in line with the usual amount set for Class B felonies. He also claimed Vallow is not a flight risk, which was one of the factors listed supporting the $5 million bail. The argument for reduced bail was also denied in Vallow’s first hearing on Feb 21.
“In all my experience here in this courtroom I have never seen the bail for a class B felony so high,” De Costa said.
County Prosecuting Attorney Justin Kollar argued Vallow is a flight risk and that if the bail is set low, she will not show up to court in Idaho.
“Your honor, we found out that Lori has a history of open defiance of court orders. In the 2009 and 2011 child-custody court orders, Lori shows a history of not showing up to court,” Kollar said.
After both attorneys argued their case, Watanabe asked both counselors to approach the bench. The white noise took over the courtroom as they were discussing matters among themselves.
Then Vallow was seen signing some forms. The judge then asked Vallow if she understood what she was signing and if she understood she had waived her right to an extradition hearing.
Vallow then verified information for Wantanabe and the counsel and signed the waver of extradition.
That voids the Kaua‘i extradition hearing set for March 2.
Watanabe ordered Kollar’s office to call and arrange for Idaho agents to come to Kaua‘i to escort her back to Idaho so she can face charges there.
To confirm that she has been escorted back to Idaho, a status hearing was set for March 4.
After the hearing, Kollar said he is content with the judge’s decision.
“We are satisfied that she will be returning to Idaho to face charges there. We look forward to making that happen as soon as possible,” Kollar said. “She decided to waive the extradition process in lieu of going back to Idaho as quickly as possible. The next step is the state of Idaho will come to Kaua‘i and pick her up.”
Stephanie Shinno, staff writer, can be reached at 245-0424 or email@example.com.