Flight to Texas, dismantling a gun: Witness describes alleged cover-up in Jacqueline Vigil’s killing in second day of trial

Luis Talamantes-Romero seems at the back of his shoulder within the court all over his path on the Bernalillo County District Courthouse in Downtown Albuquerque, N.M., on Tuesday, April 18, 2023. Talamantes-Romero is accused of fatally taking pictures Jacqueline Vigil in the driveway of her West Side house in 2019. (Chancey Bush/ Albuquerque Journal)

Jurors in the trial of a guy accused of fatally taking pictures Jacqueline Vigil in her West Side driveway in 2019 heard testimony Wednesday concerning the alleged cover-up of the killing.

Luis Talamantes-Romero, 35, fled to San Antonio, Texas, in the weeks after Vigil’s killing on the advice of his sister, jurors had been advised at the second day of testimony in his trial.

Talamantes-Romero is charged with first-degree homicide, two counts of irritated housebreaking and different fees in Vigil’s taking pictures loss of life and different alleged crimes dedicated that morning.

Karla Aguirre, a former female friend of Talamantes-Romero’s, described main points of the alleged cover-up.

Talamantes-Romero returned to his sister’s house in Barelas at about 7 a.m. Nov. 19, 2019, about two hours after the killing, Aguirre testified via a Spanish-language interpreter.

He later advised Aguirre and his sister, Elizabeth Talamantes, that he had shot a lady outdoor her house, Aguirre testified.

Talamantes-Romero used to be to start with reluctant to speak about the killing however changed into extra candid about his movements, she mentioned.

“At the time he had a lot of adrenaline,” Aguirre mentioned. “And then later when he told me what had happened, he had calmed down some. He was more aware of what he had done.”

Talamantes-Romero described coming near Vigil’s automobile from at the back of and taking pictures Vigil, Aguirre mentioned. Talamantes advised Aguirre he didn’t know why he shot Vigil, she mentioned.

Vigil, the mum of two State Police officials, used to be shot as soon as in the pinnacle about 5 a.m. Nov. 19, 2019, as she tried to again out of her driveway on her means to the gymnasium.

The case won nationwide consideration when Vigil’s husband, Sam Vigil, and his sons attended a news convention on the White House, the place then-President Donald Trump introduced the case could be integrated in the federal crime combating initiative, Operation Legend.

News experiences of the killing alarmed Talamantes-Romero, Aguirre testified.

“I think he was more worried when he learned that she was the mom of a policeman,” she mentioned.

Elizabeth Talamantes advised her brother that he must flee New Mexico and really helpful that he stick with a cousin in San Antonio, Texas, Aguirre mentioned. Talamantes-Romero used to be to start with reluctant however agreed to the plan, she mentioned.

Aguirre, Talamantes-Romero and his sister, drove to San Antonio someday in December 2019. They took with them the .40-caliber handgun that Talamantes-Romero had used to kill Vigil, Aguirre advised jurors.

While in San Antonio, they destroyed the homicide weapon through breaking it into items, she mentioned.

After losing off Talamantes-Romero in San Antonio, Aguirre and Elizabeth Talamantes drove again to Albuquerque. On the way in which house, Elizabeth Talamantes tossed out items of the firearm in far flung places in Texas, Aguirre mentioned.

Elizabeth Talamantes, 41, pleaded in charge closing 12 months in U.S. District Court of New Mexico to a fees of ownership of a firearm to additional a drug-trafficking crime. She used to be sentenced in August to 5 years in federal jail.

The fees emerged from an FBI investigation into her position in serving to her brother flee to San Antonio.

FBI brokers finished a seek warrant at her house on Pacific SW in Barelas in August 2020 and located two Glock pistols and a amount of methamphetamine.

Read extra concerning the case: ‘The most horrific thing’: Jurors listen from sufferer’s widower on first day of Luis Talamantes-Romero trial

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