Monday, December 4, 2023

The Murder of Lisa Bollaert

Image source: Tulsa World

Lisa Bollaert was found brutally murdered in Tulsa, Oklahoma on May 6th, 2009. 

The 37-year-old woman was originally from New York and had only been in the Tulsa area since late April. Prior to this, Lisa was receiving mental health treatment at a facility in New York. According to reports, Lisa walked away from the facility and began hitch hiking across several states before stopping in Oklahoma. She checked into a Salvation Army shelter in Tulsa on April 27th, 2009. Two days later, Lisa checked into a women's shelter in Sand Springs.

Over the next several days, Lisa was spotted by surveillance cameras around the Tulsa and Sand Springs area. On April 30th, she was captured on camera outside of Tulsa's FBI office, accompanied by a white man in his 40s or 50s. On May 5th, Lisa was captured by convenience store footage after walking away from the Sand Springs women's shelter. The following day, Lisa's body was found in a garbage bag in a nearby front yard.

According to law enforcement, Lisa's killer(s) acted with "extreme rage." She had been severely beaten and her body was covered with lacerations. Lisa was found with her arms and legs bound by duct tape. Her body had been stuffed into a garbage bag before being left in the front yard on 81st and Elmwood. 

Years have passed without an arrest in Lisa's case. Both Lisa's loved ones and investigators remained baffled by the questions: Who killed Lisa, and why?

More about Lisa.

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Loved ones remember Lisa as a kind and generous person. Prior to her death, Lisa was married to a man named James Bollaert. The couple lived in New York and had a daughter together. Lisa also had a son from a previous marriage. 

Image source: Justice for Lisa Bollaert (Facebook)

Lisa was also previously a member of the U.S. Army but had been recently discharged before entering the mental health facility in New York. 

Struggles with mental health.

According to Oklahoma Cold Cases, Lisa first began showing signs of mental illness in 2001. Reports state she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and had been hospitalized in the past. Lisa's husband, James, reported that he was worried about his wife as she had told him that she was seeing ghosts. 

It's known that Lisa was receiving treatment for her mental health shortly before she hitch-hiked from New York to Tulsa. She left the facility with no belongings - just the clothes on her back. Lisa did not even have a wallet or cell phone on her person. 

Surveillance footage from the Tulsa FBI office.

As previously noted, Lisa was captured by surveillance cameras outside of the Tulsa FBI office on April 30th, 2009. She was accompanied by a white man in his 40s or 50s. 

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It was later learned that Lisa went to the FBI office that day because she "wanted to see if the FBI had any information on her before she went to an Army recruiting office to re-enlist." The man seen with her in the footage reportedly gave her a ride to the office.

After Lisa was found murdered, it was reported that police wanted to locate/speak to the man in the footage. He was not labeled a suspect at that time; just someone who investigators wanted to interview. Snippets of the surveillance footage were shown on the news as an appeal was made to the public to help identify this man.

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In 2014, it was reported that investigators still had not identified this person. As of 2023, it's unclear if he has been identified or located.

Surveillance footage from the convenience store.

On May 5th, 2009, Lisa was captured by surveillance cameras outside of a convenience store near the women's shelter. 

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This is the last documented sighting of Lisa before she was found deceased. It is unknown where she was traveling in this footage. What is known is that at some point shortly after this, Lisa encountered the person(s) who ended her life. 

A body is found. 

On May 6th, 2009, police received a call from homeowners about a mysterious garbage bag in their front yard. Inside the bag was the body of a deceased woman. It took a few days, but the body was eventually identified as that of Lisa Bollaert. It was clear that she had been a victim of homicide.

The fact that Lisa had been bound with duct tape, beaten, and stabbed is just one of the many disturbing elements of this case. Although the case has been open for years, the disturbing aspects of it still haunt investigators to this day.

Where the case stands today.

Investigators have collected DNA samples from the trash bag and the tape on Lisa's body, but they have yet to get a solid lead in the case. Lisa's murder remains unsolved today.

If you have any information that could help solve Lisa's murder, please contact the Tulsa Police Homicide Unit at 918-596-9135. 

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