Joseph Michael Lopez: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know


Natalie Bollinger Shawn Schwartz

Joseph Michael Lopez was arrested on first-degree murder charges in connection with the death of Natalie Bollinger.

22-year-old Joseph Michael Lopez was arrested by the Adams County Sheriff’s Office in Colorado on first-degree murder charges in connection with the death of Natalie Bollinger. The alleged killer told police that he answered an online ad Bollinger published looking for a hitman to kill her.

Authorities reported Bollinger,19, died from a single gunshot wound to the head, and the suspect allegedly murdered her execution-style.

Adams County Sheriff Michael McIntosh announced the arrest in the case during a Friday news conference, and said Lopez is the lone suspect.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Lopez Claimed to Have Answered a Craiglist Ad Where Bollinger Was Looking for a Hitman to Kill Her

Natalie Bollinger, Natalie Bollinger arrested suspect FacebookNatalie Bollinger is seen in this Facebook photo.

According to an affidavit, Lopez claimed he killed Bollinger at her own request after she published an ad on Craiglist seeking a hitman to take her life.

During an interrogation, Lopez told detectives he came upon an odd Craigslist ad in late December where he claimed Bollinger had published the title “I want to put a hit on myself.” Lopez said he was visiting a “Woman seeking Men” category of the website, according to police.

Lopez then told authorities he made contact with Bollinger after he used a fake hit man identity, and agreed to meet her after repeated texts between the two, according to the affidavit.

According to police, the suspected killer said he subsequently picked Bollinger up and they discussed payment and how she wanted to be killed.

Lopez said she asked to killed using her own gun and “on her knees…executed from behind,” the affidavit stated.

2. Bollinger’s Body Was Found January 2 & an Arrest Was Made February 8

Natalie Bollinger Colorado Natalie Bollinger.

According to authorities, Bollinger’s body was found on Friday, and her body was identified on Tuesday, January 2. Her death was initially treated as a homicide.

Bollinger, of Broomfield, went missing December 28 following a conversation with a family member, and police were subsequently contacted as loved ones grew concerned over the teen’s safety.

3. Autopsy: She Died From a Single Gunshot to the Head & Had a ‘Potentially Lethal’ Level of Heroin in Her System

According to the autopsy report, Bollinger died of a gunshot wound to the head, but also had a “potentially lethal” level of heroin in her system at the time of death.

Her manner of death was deemed a homicide on the autopsy, however Lopez is facing murder charges.

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4. Bollinger Took a Restraining Order Out on Shawn Schwartz Before Her Death, Leading Many to Speculate He Was the Killer

Natalie Bollinger Colorado, Shawn Schwartz Colorado Shawn Schwartz adamantly protested claims that he was involved in Bollinger’s death.

Bollinger took out a restraining order on Shawn Schwartz only days prior, and professed her concerns about the man via Facebook.

On December 13, the victim posted to Facebook about concerns regarding Schwartz, and said he was continually harassing her, adding that he even “drove across country” to see her. She wrote:

Hey y’all, I have a public announcement…there is a man Shawn Schwartz. I met this man when I was young. I ran into him about 2 years ago. Long story short, I became friends w him. I helped him out w rides and stuff. I moved to VA.

He drove across country to see me.. slept behind my work for weeks. When I told him I didn’t want to see him anymore, he sent me hundreds of texts and calls. He parked his car in front of my house, blocking Military Highway for hours… laying on his horn.. he was arrested.

Since then, I’ve asked him to leave me alone.. and he won’t. He’s sent emails for over a year close to everyday, harassing me. Making numerous account until I block him again. Threatening my family, telling me he’ll kill himself in front of me, and sending my friends and family harassing messages as well.

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I’m sharing this because, he’s posting slander about me all over FB. So, if you receive a message… I am sincerely sorry. Please ignore him… it only encourages him when he gets a response (much like a child). He’s mentally ill and I’m trying to fix this.

Schwartz continually uploaded videos to social media claiming that he is innocent of any wrongdoing regarding Bollinger, and he was not named as a suspect in her death at the time of publishing.

Heavy spoke with Schwartz, who again proclaimed his innocence and said he was merely friends with Bollinger, adding that he “needs an advocate” after being harassed for over a year.

Schwawrtz expressed that he is need of legal assistance and said he isn’t understanding what he did to “deserve this.”

“I have no idea what I did to deserve this,” Schwartz told Heavy. “I have a flip phone that proves I was invited to Virginia by Natalie. I have been trying to get the harassment against me to stop for over a year…I need legal assistance, an advocate.”

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Read more on Bollinger and Schwartz below:

5. When Police Arrived to Arrest Lopez, ‘He Was Sure it Had to Do With the Girl He Talked to on Craigslist

According to the affidavit, Lopez cooperated with authorities. When police arrived to arrest the suspect he said “he was sure it had to do with the girl he talked to on Craiglist.

He was arrested upon arriving to his job at Domino’s pizza, the documents stated.

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