Katlyn Lyon Montgomery, a 28-year-old mother of a 4-year-old girl, was found unconscious in the small Virginia community where she lived in early October of this year. She was taken to a hospital in nearby Lynchburg but succumbed to her injuries the next day.
By late October, the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office and the FBI arrested and charged Montgomery’s ex-boyfriend Trenton Frye, 28, of Greensboro, North Carolina with murder in the second degree. He is currently awaiting extradition to Virginia.
Newly-released court documents offer insight into how the beloved “dancing queen” was taken away forever. Spread across 31 pages, many of the documents are substantially similar and largely duplicative of one another.
An attachment to one affidavit details the initial law enforcement response and eventual determination of how Montgomery died:
Upon arrival, Deputies located Katlyn Montgomery unresponsive with agonal breathing on the floor. She was rapidly transported to Centra Lynchburg General Hospital where physicians noted linear markings consistent with being strangled on her neck and throat. They also observed petechial hemorrhaging on her face and eyes. Hospital personnel contacted the Sheriff’s Office and updated them on their findings. Investigators executed a search warrant on the residence [where Montgomery was found] and located phone charging cords wrapped up in a blanket on the bed. Law enforcement assessed the cords appeared to be the same size as the linear markings found on the victim’s neck.
Search warrants for the defendant’s Ford Explorer show that BCSO deputies began their investigation the same day Montgomery was found in her apartment. From the SUV, deputies say they recovered several receipts, a purple hair brush, black glasses, a car charger with two chords, three pairs of black pants, and two black shirts.
Montgomery’s obituary notes that purple was her favorite color.
“During the course of the investigation, Trenton Frye was identified as a recent ex-boyfriend,” one of the search warrants says. “He provided a statement via telephone that he had not been in Virginia recently and had been working in North Carolina. He also claimed to not know where the victim was now living. A search warrant of his phone tower history revealed that he was in Bedford County the night of the incident. The tower his phone communicated with is within 1 mile of the victim’s address. The victim’s phone also has a record of an argument via text between Trenton Frye and herself over their recent break-up on the night leading up to this incident.”
Law enforcement quickly identified Frye as a suspect after that alleged initial lie about when and where he had been in Virginia last.
Additional investigation firmed up the hypothesis.
“Montgomery and Frye relationship end [sic] on bad terms and text messages seen by Investigator Burnette of the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office would confirm that suspicion,” a probable cause affidavit attached to a location data warrant alleges. “A search warrant for Frye’s cellphone records with T-Mobile show that he was in the Lynchburg and Bedford area several days before she was attacked.”
The deceased woman was a mother. Her surviving family started a GoFundMe for her daughter, Milani Lyon.
“The last thing Katlyn wrote in her journal was I am loved,” her family wrote in a statement the BCSO shared. “Our pain will become our purpose to carry on her legacy and remind everyone they are loved.”
The rest of that statement reads:
Katlyn was an amazing devoted and loving mother to her 4-year-old daughter. She brightened every room she ever entered and was the light of our life. She never met a stranger and would go out of her way to help anyone. She believed in love and unity. She believed that everyone deserves the chance to be happy and live life to the fullest. Her family is devastated by this tragedy, especially her mother who is grieving the ultimate loss. She was a loving daughter, the funny sister, the sweet granddaughter, the lovable niece, the feisty cousin, and the friend who loved with no limits. She will be dearly missed by everyone, and our family will always honor her memory.
Montgomery’s obituary remembers her fondly and as a source of light:
Katlyn passed away tragically and was the light of our life. She was a loving mother and devoted to raising her precious daughter. She loved music, festivals, and was our dancing queen. She never met a stranger and was fortunate to travel, so that she could spread the message of peace, love, and unity to all she encountered. She was our family mac-n-cheese connoisseur and rarely did you see her without an iced coffee in her hand. Our fashionista will be missed more than words can describe. We will always honor her memory and cherish every moment we got to spend with her.
In Katlyn’s own words, “I AM LOVED” is how we will always remember her.
[image via Bedford County Sheriff’s Office]
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