Delivery alert

There may be an issue with the delivery of your newspaper. This alert will expire at NaN. Click here for more info.

Recover password

Double slaying suspect’s dad tried to intimidate witness, prosecutors say

Stephen Goldman Sr. (MDC)

Stephen Goldman, 19 (MDC)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — “What we up against … there ain’t nothin’ worse.”

That’s what Stephen Goldman Sr, 43, told his son in a jail call earlier this month.

The men are charged — along with three others — in connection with the slaying of two Albuquerque teens late last year.

Three jail calls between the pair and testimony that the father traveled to Nevada to intimidate a witness were entered as evidence in a motion to keep Goldman Sr. behind bars until trial. Second Judicial District Court Judge Stan Whitaker granted the motion, finding that “no conditions will protect witnesses from (Goldman Sr.) contacting them for the purpose of manipulation or intimidation.”

Goldman Sr.’s attorney appealed Whitaker’s decision, but on Thursday the state Court of Appeals upheld the ruling.

Collin Romero and Ahmed Lateef (Source: APD)

Goldman Sr. is charged with two counts of tampering with evidence in connection with the Dec. 16 deaths of Ahmed Lateef, 14, and Collin Romero, 15. His son Stephen Goldman Jr., 20, along with Jimmie Atkins, 23, and Julio “FaFa” Almentero, 15, are charged in the kidnapping, torture and slaying of the two teens.

Lateef and Romero were reported missing on Dec. 16 and found buried in shallow graves in the mesa northwest of Rio Rancho a couple of weeks later. Both teens had been beaten and shot numerous times.

Afterward Goldman Sr. torched the car and got rid of the guns used in the slayings, according to police. Much of the allegations in the criminal complaint against Goldman Sr., Goldman Jr., Atkins and Almentero come from Almentero’s uncle, Anthony Aragon, 37.

Aragon is charged with two counts of tampering with evidence, accused of helping the suspects clean up after the slayings and bury the teens’ bodies. Aragon is currently behind bars in Las Vegas, Nevada, on unrelated charges.

According to court records, Goldman Sr. traveled to Nevada and attended Aragon’s two-day sentencing hearing with the purpose of “intimidating a witness.” Afterward, Goldman Sr. spoke with his son in jail calls about seeing Aragon. The father and son talked about not feeling bad about the homicides — saying “when you play with big dogs, this is what happens” — and battering a co-defendant who spoke to police.

Anthony Aragon, 36. (MDC)

In a transcript of a May 2019 jail call, Goldman Sr. tells his son how he attended Aragon’s court hearing that day and “pressed that (racial slur).”

“Told them all in the courtroom. That (racial slur) a rat,” the transcript states. “…I’m gonna look at the (racial slur) in his (expletive) face… As soon as you touch New Mexico, you seeing my face again.”

After Goldman Jr. thanks him, his father replies, “I’m here. Anything got to do with my son, (racial slur) I’m here.”

In a transcript of a June 2019 jail call, the father laments the situation.

“It’s just a whole (expletive) up situation, bro, that we have to go down this road,” the transcript states. “…It’s just (expletive) up that you might lose your life over all this (expletive) dude.”
Goldman Jr. replies “We gonna fight it.”

In an October 2019 jail call, Goldman Jr. tells his father his “feelings are hurt” because a co-defendant is working with police, and they talk about attacking that person.

“I started tearing up a little bit. You feel me? ‘Cause I was thinking to myself , like, homie, I did everything for them (racial slur),” the transcript states. “Man, I’m taking off on that (racial slur)…In front of the judge and everything… I’m goin’ to the full extent. Hit me with a hate crime. I don’t care. That’s just another year.”

His father replies, “What we up against, a year ain’t nothin’ — (expletive) it. Give me another one. Give me five of ‘em (expletive.)”

The two men then say “I love you” before hanging up. Detectives arrested Goldman Sr. two days later.

Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a story about how coronavirus has affected you, your family or your business? Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? What issues related to the topic would you like to see covered? Or do you have a bright spot you want to share in these troubling times?
   We want to hear from you. Please email or Contact the writer.

More on ABQjournal