CHICAGO — Family members of Frances Walker, who police say was murdered and dismembered by 36-year-old Sandra Kolalou, wonder if the tragedy could have been prevented, pointing to a series of 911 calls in the days and hours leading up to her disappearance.
Loved ones say missed opportunities likely led to Walker’s death.
Sandra Kolalou, 36, is charged with first-degree murder and concealment of a homicide. Denied bond for her alleged crimes, Kolalou appeared in the Leighton Criminal Courts Building for a hearing on Monday.
Sean Brown, Kolalou’s defense attorney, spoke out for the first time, saying that everyone inside the house remains a suspect. Evidence tying Kolalous to the grisly murder is lacking, Brown added.
“Four of those suspects all point the finger at my client,” Brown said. “Something is wrong with that picture.”
But Frances Walker’s loved ones say the boarding house tenants feared Kolalou.
“One of those calls could have saved her life,” said the victim’s daughter-in-law, Maggie Walker.
The victim’s grieving family looked back to what they say were unmistakable warning signs from a distressed Fran Walker.
“We now know that Fran called 911 eight times from Oct. 1 to Oct. 10,” Walker said. “The 10th was the day she was murdered.”
Walker’s dismembered head and limbs were discovered by police in a freezer at Walkers West Rogers Park Boarding Home.
The 69-year-old’s torso is still missing.
Walker’s niece, Cory Walker, pointed to responding CPD patrol officers, who the family believes was slow to recognize the probable cause to thoroughly search the premises on the 5900 block of North Washtenaw.
“Police didn’t listen to the tenants,” she said. “Had they listened to the tenant from upstairs who reported my aunt missing and was living there for 10 years, maybe they would have known they had probable cause to make entry to the apartment and search for my aunt’s remains.”
The victim’s youngest brother Jerome Walker traveled from Georgia for Monday’s hearing at the Leighton Criminal Courts Building.
“I’m coping by remembering Fran and trying to make sure that Sandra never has a chance to hurt any innocent people again,” Walker said.
WGN News reached out to Chicago police for comment. Thus far, requests for comment have not yet been returned.