A Chicago boarding house tenant who was recently served an eviction notice has been arrested, charged with killing her landlord and dismembering her.
Police said Sandra Kolalou, 36, allegedly put the dismembered body parts of Francis Walker, 69, in the house’s freezer, then later deposited bloody rags into a garbage can at Foster Beach, as CrimeOnline previously reported.
Meanwhile, other tenants — who heard screaming at about 2:30 a.m. Monday morning — called and texted their landlord. Walker didn’t answer the phone, but the tenants did get a text response — a response later determined to have been sent by Kolalou, WFLD reported.
By early Monday evening, the tenants were still concerned with Walker’s whereabouts and called police, who arrived as Kolalou was heading toward a tow truck she had called — and paid for with Walker’s credit card, investigators later learned.
Kolalou refused to talk with officers and asked the tow truck driver to take her to Foster Beach to tow her car, which was parked there. The other tenants told the driver they believed Kolalou was dangerous and exchanged information with him, police said.
The driver told the tenants that when they arrived at Foster Beach, Kolalou put a large bag into a garbage can. Other tenants, who had followed the tow truck, checked the bag and found “bloody rags,” investigators said. They called police about the discovery.
Meanwhile, officers had performed a cursory search of the boarding house but found no evidence of foul play. After the discovery of the bloody rags, they search again, this time finding blood in Kolalou’s room — and some of Walker’s remains in the freezer.
Kolalou, still with the tow truck driver, allegedly threatened him with a knife for talking with the tenants. Officers responded to where they were an took Kolalou into custody. Once back at the police station, she invoked her right to remain silent.
Police obtained a search warrant for Walker’s home and conducted a more detailed search, finding blood in Walker’s room and on knives in the home, including “large butcher knives” that appeared to have been used for the dismemberment.
Kolalou has been charged with first-degree murder and concealment of a homicide.
Chicago Police Chief of Detectives Brendan Deenihan said that Walker and Kolalou lived on the first floor of the house, and there were apartments on the second floor and in the basement, all separated for privacy by deadbolts. Those, he said, kept the other tenants from physically responding to the screams they heard.
“Due to the fact that there had been arguments before with this defendant and other people in the residence, the tenants immediately in the morning tried to figure out what was wrong … but they didn’t just have free rein of the house,” Deenihan said.
As for a motive, Deenihan said the potential eviction could have been the reason.
“The deceased, the owner of the residence, had actually served the defendant with a notice to leave, or an eviction notice … as recently as Saturday,” he said.
Neighbors, meanwhile, were stunned. They described Walker as “a wonderful woman who cares about others,” “friendly,” and well loved by everyone on the block.
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[Featured image: Sandra Kolalou/Cook County Sheriff’s Office and Francis Walker/Legal Help Firm]