Bail denied for woman accused of dismembering landlord 2 days after getting eviction notice: prosecutors
CHICAGO - Bail was denied for a Chicago woman accused of killing, dismembering and stuffing her landlord's body parts in the freezer of a North Side boarding home.
At a bond hearing Thursday, 36-year-old Sandra Kolalou, was denied bail and prosecutors painted a picture of the events leading up to the gruesome murder.
The offender was charged Wednesday with murdering her landlord, apparently using "large butcher knives" to dismember her body before putting the body parts in a freezer, police said.
Prosecutors say 63-year-old Francis Walker was the landlord and occupant of a single-family two-story home located at 5919 North Washtenaw Avenue where Kolalou rented a room.
As of Monday, five total tenants were renting rooms in the home. There were three tenants on the second floor, and the victim and the defendant had rooms on the first floor while one tenant occupied the basement.
There is a full kitchen and bathroom on each floor and the tenants exclusively used the kitchen and bathroom on their floor.
Kolaloua moved into her first-floor bedroom in the home in July of 2022.
On Oct. 7, after receiving complaints from other tenants about Kolalou, Walker changed the locks on two doors of the residence to prevent the offender from going into the basement where another resided.
Prosecutors say on Oct. 9, due to ongoing conflict between the defendant and other tenants, Walked posted an eviction notice on the offender’s door. Around 11 p.m., the victim and the Kolalou were seen arguing about the eviction.
Around 2:30 a.m. Monday, other tenants heard loud bangs and the victim and defendant arguing on the first floor. The basement tenant heard the defendant screaming and what sounded like a dish hitting the floor, according to prosecutors.
The basement tenant heard the victim's voice trying to calm down Kolalou and that was the last time she heard the victim. At the same time, the upstairs tenant heard the two arguing and texted Walker to see if she was ok. The victim did not respond to the text message and the upstairs tenant did not hear her voice after that.
Sandra Kolalou is accused of murdering and dismembering her landlord in her North Side boarding home.
Prosecutors say the upstairs tenant then heard what sounded like furniture being moved on the first floor and the downstairs tenant began to hear footsteps of what sounded like one person pacing in the common area of the first floor. Between 3:30 and 5:30 a.m., the downstairs tenant heard what sounded like scratching noises in the common area of the first floor and continued pacing of what sounded like one person.
Beginning at 6 a.m., the upstairs and downstairs tenants began receiving text messages from Walker's phone telling them to allow Kolalou to care for her dog and to give the defendant their keys if they moved out. Given the issues between the offender and the victim coupled with the eviction notice, the tenants found these texts extremely unusual and at 12 p.m. Monday, the basement tenant contacted the police, according to prosecutors.
The police responded, spoke to the offender and the basement tenant, and left the area. At 5:40 PM, another tenant in the home filed a missing person’s report.
The police responded and asked the offender to come outside by knocking on the doors and windows of the first floor to no avail. At 5:44 p.m., Kolalou called a tow truck to take her to Foster Beach where her vehicle was parked.
At 6:28 p.m., Kolalou was stopped by officers when she exited the residence with a large black garbage bag. The offender gave officers consent to search her bedroom.
The offender dropped the black garbage bag and accompanied officers to the back of the home. While the defendant was in the back with the officers, a witness on the scene looked into the black bag she had been carrying and observed paper, greeting cards, and several white tied garbage bags inside the black garbage bag. The witness reached inside the bag and felt something heavy inside like sand, prosecutors say.
Officers searched the offender’s bedroom, found nothing incriminating, and released her.
The tow truck remained on scene while offender was in the rear of the home with officers. During that time, the tow truck driver was informed of the situation by a witness on scene and the tow truck driver gave witnesses his business card.
The offender entered the tow truck with the black bag and was driven to Foster Beach. As they drove, a witness from the scene call the tow truck driver and told him to be careful.
When they arrived, the tow truck driver saw the offender immediately exit the tow truck and move the black garbage bag to a nearby trash can. The tow truck driver communicated with the witness he spoke to on the phone and shared what he observed. The tow truck driver then took the offender and her vehicle to a mechanic shop.
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Prosecutors say three witnesses from the scene, including the person who looked into Kolalou’s black bag previously, drove to Foster Beach and waited at a distance until the tow truck containing the offender pulled away. They opened the trash can and observed the multiple white garbage bags inside. The person from the scene recognized them as the same white bags he had seen inside the offender’s black garbage bag at the residence.
Officers arrived, recovered the bags, and observed paper, greeting cards, pooled blood, and blood-soaked rags inside.
Meanwhile, a witness at the residence discovered blood in the victims bedroom, near the defendant's bedroom and in the common area, prosecutors say.
The tow truck driver, who was still at the mechanic shop with the defendant, was alerted. Police contacted the driver and he stalled the offender at the mechanic until the police arrived.
Officers spoke to the offender again and released her.
Because of the police involvement, the mechanic refused to service the offender’s vehicle and the tow truck driver drove the offender from the mechanic to the area of Western and Estes to park her car.
Before exiting the tow truck, the offender paid the tow truck driver using the Walker's credit card. As she was paying, the tow truck driver noticed the offender holding an object with a red handle.
The defendant insisted that the driver take her somewhere else and he declined. She became upset and aggressively removed her hands from her pockets, with a knife with a red handle still in her hand.
The driver yelled to the police who were in the area that the offender had a knife and used a stick to keep her away from him. Kolalou was arrested, and officers recovered a knife with a red handle.
Officers recovered a large black empty crumped black garbage bag from the rear of the tow truck. A search warrant was executed on the victim's house. In the first-floor kitchen freezer, police discovered the victim's severed head, dismembered arms and dismembered legs. The victim's torso has not been located at this time.
Police also found the presence of blood in the following areas: the common area between the downstairs rooms, the threshold leading to the offender’s room, many locations in the victim's bedroom, the first-floor bathroom sink and closet, on two chef knives found in the first-floor kitchen, and on a Lysol bottle in the offender's bedroom.
The victim's phone was recovered in Kolalou's bedroom.
The defendant has a record of assault and battery.
Kolalou will appear in court next on Oct. 31.