FORT MORGAN COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) — The body of William E. “Billy” Trimbach was found alongside a road in western Morgan County on Valentine’s Day in 1993. That day was also his first wedding anniversary with his wife, Cindy.
Investigators say he was shot to death at an unknown location and his body dragged from a vehicle and left several yards north of the I-76 Frontage Road west of Wiggins.
At the time of his death, Billy was living just west of Stoneham, in far northeastern Weld County, with his wife, infant daughter and his 9-year-old stepson.
Cindy had contracted the HIV-virus, which had developed into AIDS, and investigators say Billy was working as a mechanic to try to make enough money to cover her medical care. They had even traveled to Mexico to try to find a treatment to cure her disease.
On Valentine’s Day, which was on a Sunday, Cindy reported Billy missing. She told investigators she hadn’t seen him since Saturday morning.
Billy’s 9-year-old stepson told investigators Billy had left the house on Saturday morning with an unknown man, apparently to help him somewhere, possibly with a mechanical issue.
Investigators determined that Billy had likely lain dead for some time at another location before his body was dumped, likely on Saturday night, according to witnesses.
Cindy told investigators she had driven past this same area Billy was found, late Saturday night, looking for him — despite the location being some 45 miles away from their home and they reportedly didn’t know anyone from the Wiggins area.
According to investigators, items found near the dump scene matched items found in the Chevy Suburban Cindy was driving that night. Small amounts of dried blood were found in the back seat of the Suburban which matched Billy’s. Investigators theorize either Billy’s body was in the Suburban at one point, or someone who had Billy’s blood on their person was in the vehicle.
Billy owned a 9mm handgun, but the gun was missing from the home. His wounds were consistent with those of a 9mm.
Billy’s wife had taken out a large life insurance policy shortly before Billy was killed and his name was forged on the insurance application.
Just after Billy’s funeral, Cindy moved to Butte, Montana. When she enrolled her son in a local school, she told officials her son had seen his father murdered.
The following year, Billy’s stepson, who was then 10 years old, took a handgun to his elementary school in Butte, and opened fire on the playground, killing another child. He was then placed into a psychiatric facility because he was too young to be charged with a crime.
A couple of years later, investigators traveled to Butte and interviewed the stepson again. They say he admitted that he had lied about seeing Billy leave with another man that Saturday morning. He said he lied because he thought his mother was involved in Billy’s disappearance.
Cindy died of AIDS-related complications in Montana in 1994.
Investigators theorize Cindy may have arranged to have Billy killed for the insurance money and may have been involved in dumping his body.
One of the suspects in the case committed suicide in 1998, “fearing he was going to be the only person prosecuted for involvement in this case,” investigators stated.
“Investigators have been hampered in this case due to some of the bizarre circumstances in this case, lack of evidence, plus, many people involved were/are methamphetamine users and their information was either discredited by others or could not otherwise be corroborated,” the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement released Wednesday. “We are hoping discussing this may generate some witnesses or new information to be able to solve his case.”
Anyone with information should call the on-call the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office at 970-867-2461, and ask for the on-call investigator. You can also call Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
For more information on Billy, you can visit his memorial page.