Killer claims victim requested hit on herself via Craigslist ad

A man from Colorado, accused of killing a 19-year-old girl, told police he shot her after he responded to her Craigslist ad seeking a hitman -- for herself.

According to an arrest affidavit obtained by NBC News, the 22-year-old killer, Joseph Michael Lopez, claims he tried to talk the victim, Natalie Bollinger, out of suicide. After failing to do so they drove around and stopped by the side of the road, where they said a prayer together as Lopez knelt on the ground beside Natalie and shot her once in the back of the head. Lopez said he used a 9mm firearm, given to him by Natalie as payment. Her body was found in Adams County.

Natalie Marie Bollinger

Detectives said Lopez told them he was browsing the "Women Seeking Men" section of Craigslist when he noticed an "unusual post" with the title "I want to put a hit on myself." The Sheriff's Office has not confirmed that such an ad had been placed.

Lopez claims he replied to the ad because he had suffered from depression and suicidal thoughts when he was in high school and thought he could persuade her not to go through with it.

Joseph Michael Lopez

He told detectives Natalie could not be convinced and that she said she wanted to be executed from behind so she wouldn't see the gun.

Friends and relatives said that Natalie had a history of suicidal thoughts, but they had not found a suicide note or any other communication indicating she wanted to take her own life. In fact, she applied for a job the day before she was killed.

Sheriff Michael McIntosh said Lopez was tracked down through dozens of text messages on Natalie's mobile phone:

"A 19-year-old's phone, there's a lot of data there," he said.

Posted in Crime & Law by Paul van der Maas

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