Man charged with first-degree murder in Natalie Bollinger case

ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. — The man accused of killing a Broomfield teen appeared in an Adams County court Wednesday where he was formally charged. 

Joseph Lopez, 22, was charged with first-degree murder after deliberation in the death of Natalie Bollinger, 19, who was found shot to death in unincorporated Adams County on December 29, 2017, about 26 hours after she was reported missing.

Lopez, a resident of Northglenn, was arrested Thursday evening following an interview with Adams County investigators, where he made shocking claims regarding the alleged motive. 

According to an affidavit Denver7 obtained Friday, Lopez told investigators Bollinger hired him to kill her after he answered the victim’s Craigslist ad titled “I want to put a hit on myself.”

In the early morning hours of Dec. 28, 2017, Lopez told investigators he responded to the alleged ad posted by Bollinger while searching the “Woman seeking Men” category on Craigslist.

After more than 100 text messages between the two, they allegedly reached an agreement, and Lopez drove to Broomfield, picked the teen up and shot her in the back of the head execution style at her own request, Lopez claims in the affidavit.

The Broomfield teen died from a single gunshot wound to the head and had a “potentially lethal level of heroin" in her system at the time of her death, according to an autopsy.

The charges filed against Lopez carry the possibility of the death penalty. However, District Attorney Dave Young has yet to decide if he will pursue capital punishment in this case.

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