Saturday, August 10, 2019

The Murder of Lisa Trubnikova


Lisa Berlanga met her wife Anna Trubnikova (pictured below) after joining the United States Coast Guard in 2008. The two women were stationed in various different places over the years, and they began dating while stationed in Kodiak, Alaska—where they would eventually become engaged and then married. After marrying, Lisa took Anna's last name.

Anna and Lisa
Upon moving to Kodiak, Lisa met her new boss Adrian Loya (pictured below). Lisa and Adrian became fast friends and began spending a lot of time together outside of work. A few months before Lisa and Anna got married, Lisa invited Adrian to spend Thanksgiving with them. The group reportedly had a wonderful holiday together, but in the following months, Anna grew resentful of Lisa’s friendship with Adrian. After Lisa and Anna got married, Anna made it clear that she did not want to share her wife with Adrian. Lisa was aware of Anna’s feelings about her friendship with Adrian, but she continued to remain friendly with him in the work environment.

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Adrian Loya
One particular night while Anna was out of town, Lisa invited Adrian over to watch TV. When Adrian arrived, it was clear that Lisa had been drinking. She reportedly tried to make a move on Adrian, which made him uncomfortable. Annoyed about the rejection, Lisa ran to her bedroom. After some time passed, Adrian went to her bedroom to check on her, and she tried yet again to make a move on him. The two talked back and forth for a few minutes, and Lisa continued to ask why he did not want to be intimate with her. At one point during the conversation, Lisa reached out and touched Adrian on his arm, in attempt to pull him towards her. Reports state that from that moment on, “Adrian believed that he had been sexually assaulted by her.”

A month or two later, Adrian wrote Lisa a 26 page-long e-mail describing what she had inflicted upon him. When Lisa did not respond in a timely fashion, Adrian sent the e-mail to Anna. After that, Lisa finally replied, “Stay away from us, we don’t want you anywhere near our lives.” Adrian then took it a step further and told Coast Guard investigators about what had happened. That plan backfired; as the Coast Guard felt Adrian should have never put himself in that position since he was Lisa’s superior. Both Adrian and Lisa were reprimanded. Months later, Adrian was transferred to Portsmouth, Virginia, while Lisa and Anna relocated to Bourne, Massachusetts.

Lisa and Anna appeared to move on from the events that happened with Adrian in Alaska. Adrian, on the other hand, remained angry. After reporting the event to the Coast Guard, he got a disciplinary letter put on his file that travelled with him to his new job in Portsmouth. Adrian believed this letter had cost him a promotion. After this, Adrian was out to get revenge. He wanted to eliminate the one person who had caused all this friction in his life: Lisa Trubnikova. 
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In preparation to get revenge, Adrian began writing a 250-page manifesto describing his relationship with Lisa and why he wanted to kill her. Adrian titled the manifesto “Loya Wars”. In the final chapter of the document, he wrote the following about his plans: “The mission is a basic assassination mission. Confront Lisa anyway I can and terminate her… Make sure Lisa knows that it is I taking her life and why. This should be very interesting how it actually plays out. I am excited!”

After months of preparation, Adrian finally put his plan in motion on February 5th, 2015. That night, Adrian drove over 10 hours from Virginia to the Trubnikova’s apartment complex in Massachusetts. Once there, Adrian set his car on fire in front of the complex’s entrance to block entry. Then, he set up a stereo player to play Star Wars music. 

Once he reached Lisa and Anna’s apartment, he shot the door twice to force it open, then made his way upstairs. Adrian immediately began to shoot as he entered Lisa and Anna’s bedroom. The women were able to flip their mattress and hide under it while Anna called 911, but Adrian continued to shoot. Anna remained on the phone with authorities for almost an hour. The officers actually arrived about 35 minutes into the 911 call, but by that time Adrian had fled the apartment but was still on the scene—making it unsafe for the police to approach. In fact, one of the officers was shot shortly after arriving on the scene, but they were unable to find the shooter. Just a few minutes later, though, Adrian appeared in their view and they were able to take him into custody.

Once first responders were able to get to Anna and Lisa, Lisa was unfortunately already dead. She had been shot 11 times. Anna, who had been shot four times, was in critical condition. Anna fortunately made a full recovery and was able to testify against Adrian at his trial, where he was charged with first degree murder. 

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Anna Trubnikova testifying
Despite pleading not guilty, Adrian eventually admitted to the jury that he was guilty. The jury ended up finding him guilty as well, and he was sentenced to  life in prison without parole.

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