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Lilly Ann Chavez has been in the spotlight since her mother, Barbara Parchem died

4:03 AM, May 16, 2013   |    comments
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Lilly Ann Chavez (Photo Courtesy of St. Johns County Sheriff's Office)

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. -- Since the death of much-loved St. Augustine waitress Barbara Parchem, her daughter has been in the local spotlight.

First Coast News has gathered information from online sources, public documents and from her attorney.

Lilly Ann Chavez, 43, was born in 1970 in Illinois, just outside Chicago, according to court records.

According to her Facebook page, she went to high school in Michigan, but Chavez and her family eventually came to Florida.

"She's a local resident, lived here 16 years. Her whole family is here," said Chavez' attorney, Tom Cushman.

Chavez has grown children and siblings in the St. Augustine area.   She studied ultrasound, according to her Facebook page, and she has worked in medical offices.

As of now, Cushman said, "Lilly doesn't have a regular job. She's been cleaning houses for a living."

In 2009, Chavez was convicted of drug charges and of dealing in stolen property. She went to prison, and her sentence was for two years.

"She came home from prison and took care of her dying father until he died," Cushman explained. "She still continued to live at her mother's house."

It's a home in Elkton, just outside St. Augustine, in a quiet neighborhood.

"She helped take care of her mother, and her mother was having some health problems," Cushman explained.

Her mother was a waitress of 20 years in Village Inn in St. Augustine.

In early April, Chavez spoke to First Coast News a week after her mother disappeared. She wanted to clear up rumors.

During an interview on April 6th, she said, "The backyard wasn't covered in blood. There's been no ransom-suicide, anything like that. Nobody knows nothing."

Chavez showed First Coast News that her mother's purse, credit cards, and vehicle were all still at the house. Chavez pleaded for help to find her mother because police, at that point, suspected no foul play.

"I don't think she just walked away," Chavez said April 6th. "I think she got picked up."

On April 30th, search teams found Barbara Parchem's body in the woods in Flagler County more than 20 miles from her home.

Later, police searched Parchem's and Chavez' home as well as Chavez' fiance's apartment in St. Augustine. Nine guns were found in Chavez' fiance's home.

"Some of the guns were WWII relics, clearly antiques," Cushman noted.

Court records indicate the guns were taken to the home of Chavez' fiance, Leighton Dockery, in the summer of 2012 when Chavez' father died.

"Leighton Dockery spent 7 years in the Marines," Cushman said. "He had a couple modern weapons. He's entitled to have weapons."

Investigators arrested Chavez and charged her with possession of a weapon as a convicted felon and possession of ammunition as a convicted felon. Her attorney believes she didn't really have them in her possession.

"She spent time at that apartment, but her residence was her mother's address," Cushman noted.

Chavez was held on $400,000 bond. It eventually was reduced to $25,000. She posted bond and got out of jail on Mother's Day.

Investigators believe Chavez knows what happened to her mother, and they call her a person of interest in the murder case.

But her attorney said, "I don't know what evidence they have or think they have, but after having met and dealt with Lilly and her family, I don't think she's involved at all."

First Coast News

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