Victim’s mother breaks silence after suspect asks for charges to be dropped

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The woman arrested in connection with the murder of a young army veteran claims she was also a victim and is asking a judge to let her go.

Police say Matthew Chavez shot Tyler Lackey, 24, and that Veronica Trimble helped in the attempted armed robbery at a Wells Fargo ATM near Gibson and Yale in February.

“There’s just a huge hole where he’s supposed to be,” said Lackey’s mother, Elizabeth Frank.

“Life’s been just really unbearable for us and this seems so senseless,” said Lackey’s aunt, Paula Frank.

They say Lackey served in the Army for five and a half years, including a tour in Afghanistan.

He had only been home for a few months before he was killed in Albuquerque.

Chavez and Trimble were arrested after they were found on the run in Oklahoma.

“[Trimble] was a participant in my son’s murder, and I miss him,” Elizabeth said.

Trimble filed a motion last week, asking a judge to dismiss her charges, which include conspiracy to commit armed robbery and car theft.

It claims confidential tipsters who led police to Chavez and Trimble have evidence to support her case that Chavez held her against her will, but the State has not released the names of those tipsters to the defense.

Lackey’s mother is hopeful a judge will ensure Trimble’s case still goes to trial.

“I think that with six felony charges, at the very least it should go to trial so that a jury can decide whether or not she was a victim,” Elizabeth said.

Trimble’s attorneys did not want to comment, saying they do not feel “it is appropriate to try [their] cases in the media.”

A hearing does not appear to have been set yet to discuss Trimble’s motion to dismiss her charges.

Her trial is set to begin next month.

In June, Chavez was sentenced to three years in prison in Oklahoma for robbery charges he picked up there while on the run after Lackey’s murder.

No word on when he’ll face murder charges in Albuquerque. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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