Recently released court documents shed light on the murder of a young mother who was found strangled in her home.
Trenton Frye, 28, remains in custody for the murder of Katlyn Lyon Montgomery, 28, who was found unresponsive on Oct. 7 in her home in the Forest, Virginia area — about 50 miles east of Roanoke. Deputies with the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office transported the young mother to an area hospital, where she died the next day.
Newly publicized court records — including search warrants — show what led to the Oct. 20 arrest of Frye, who was in North Carolina after the murder, Law & Crime reported.
Bedford County deputies were called to the Madison View Drive apartment that morning following reports of a woman who was “not breathing,” according to court records. Following Montgomery’s transfer to a nearby hospital in Lynchburg, medical personnel observed petechial hemorrhaging on her face and eyes and linear markings, “consistent with being strangled on her neck and throat,” wrote Bedford County detectives.
Following the issuance of a search warrant at Montgomery’s home, investigators found “phone charging cords wrapped up in a blanket on the bed,” which they came to believe were used to strangle Montgomery.
Investigators set their sights on Frye, who was from Greensboro, North Carolina, after learning that Montgomery broke off their relationship one week prior to her murder.
“Investigators also learned Montgomery and Frye were arguing over text messages the night of Oct. 6,” detectives wrote.
Frye spoke with investigators on the phone on Oct. 7, even as Montgomery still clung to life.
“Frye advised he was unaware of anything wrong with Montgomery and noted he was working in North Carolina on the night of Oct. 6,” according to charging documents. “He denied having knowledge of where Montgomery was residing as she had recently moved.”
Montgomery died of her injuries on Oct. 8.
Photo: Bedford County Sheriff's Office
One day after Montgomery’s death, Frye admitted himself into the Cone Health Behavioral Health Hospital in Greensboro. (Authorities stated he was still a patient when detectives signed the probable cause statement on Oct. 17.)
Investigators spoke with Frye’s mother, who confirmed that Frye had his phone with him when he sought treatment, prompting authorities to issue a search warrant for his phone on Oct. 13, according to court records.
Search warrant reports show Frye’s phone pinging on a tower just one mile from Montgomery’s home on the night of Oct. 6 at 10:19 p.m..
The phone would not ping to a tower in North Carolina until the following day at around 9:36 a.m. — the morning Montgomery was found unresponsive in her apartment.
Furthermore, Frye’s employer informed deputies that Frye did not work on the evening of Oct. 6, contrary to what Frye told investigators. He also did not work the following day.
When announcing Frye’s arrest, the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office released a statement on behalf of Montgomery’s family.
“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,” the family wrote. “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,” continued loved ones.
The family referenced Montgomery’s final journal entry, which stated, “I am loved.”
Jail records show Frye is currently housed at the Greensboro Detention Center in North Carolina and awaiting extradition back to Virginia, where he faces charges of second-degree murder. He is now being held on fugitive charges on a $1.5 million cash bond.