NewsOklahoma’s Cold Case Files


Oklahoma's Cold Case Files: Dumped at Lookout Mountain

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Posted at 3:17 PM, Mar 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-19 23:55:29-04

TULSA, Okla. — On September 24, 1984, Lisa Ledbetter was just 24 years old.

She was a sister and aunt of a toddler. Then she was brutally murdered that fall.

Now, that toddler is grown up, and she's fighting for justice for her aunt.

"And mom and Lisa probably look about, I'd say they were probably 8 or 9 years old," Sarah said. "Here they were just toddlers, you know, very young."

A daughter and a sister looked through old photos of Lisa and Laura Ledbetter, fraternal twins six years older than their baby sister Sarah.

"I was more of a, I don't know, [a] mommy and daddy's little girl," Sarah said.

Sarah said she mostly stayed to herself growing up.

"My main thing was school. And, you know, they did their thing," Sarah said.

Amber Reed is Sarah's niece and Laura Ledbetter's daughter. She remembers her aunt Lisa had a special place in her heart for her.

"My aunt loved me like I was her own."

Amber remembers hearing Lisa captured the center of attention wherever she went.

"She was like, almost like, when she walked into a room, it just lit up," Amber said.

But it's just things she's heard.

"I have no memory of my aunt Lisa," Amber said.

Lisa was murdered in September 1984 when Amber was just 16 months old. Sarah remembers that day vividly.

"Michael Buckendorf, he was sheriff, he had called my father… saying they had found her body," Sarah said.

Amber said her mother, Laura, was forever changed by her twin sister's murder.

"My mother struggled with that her whole life. Um, she had a problem with substance abuse my entire life," Amber said.

The Tulsa County Sheriff's Cold Case Unit wants to find Lisa's killer.

"She was stabbed multiple times, and she also had blunt trauma injuries about the neck and head," said Sgt. Tressi Mizell with Tulsa County Sheriff's Office.

Lisa's naked body found in the woods on a secluded road, leading up to what's known as Lookout Mountain.

"An employee was driving to work early in the morning. And as he rounded the corner, his headlights went across her body," Mizell said.

The cold case investigators hope new technology provides new answers.

"We do have evidence that can be tested with all the new updates in DNA. Testing and fingerprinting," Mizell said.

And they feel they're closing in on the trail of Lisa's killers.

"Well, we have some people in mind already. We do have people of interest," Mizell said.

In the meantime, Amber and Sarah often visit the spot where they found Lisa. For Amber, she's keeping a promise to her mother.

"Even though my mother has passed, it's still very important for me to get justice for my aunt Lisa because she did not deserve what happened to her," Amber said.

If you have any information about the murder of Lisa Ledbetter, call the Tulsa County Sheriff's Cold Case Unit at 918-596-5723.

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