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North Carolina Injury Blog

Marine Faces Wrongful Death Suit after Criminal Conviction

Posted on Sep 4, 2012 1:11pm PDT

Cesar Laurean, a former United States Marine, was recently convicted of first-degree murder in a case involving the death of fellow Marine, Lance Corporal Maria Frances Lauterbach. Since the conclusion of his trial, and the subsequent appeals process, the North Carolina Supreme Court has decided to allow the wrongful death lawsuit that has been filed against him by the victim's family. Although Laurean has already been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, the family still believes that he should be held accountable for providing compensation for their loss. Reports of the incident explain that 20-year-old Lauterbach had been eight months pregnant at the time of her death, when she went missing from Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina back in December of 2007.

Upon investigation of her disappearance, it was discovered that she had been brutally beaten with a crowbar and that her body had been burned once she was killed. Her remains were recovered from the backyard of Cesar Laurean in Jacksonville, N.C., who by that time had fled to Mexico. When he was eventually found three months later, prosecutors had to agree to take the death penalty off the table in exchange for his return to the United States—as the Marine had been born in Guadalajara, Mexico. Authorities speculate that she was killed in relation to a pending case that involved both the victim and her killer. Lauterbach had claimed that she had been raped by Laurean, and she was gearing up to testify in court about the matter. Before she had the chance, however, she and her unborn child were bludgeoned to death.

As a result, the family of the victim is seeking damages for the loss that they have suffered. If you have been forced to endure the loss of a loved one, as well, you should not hesitate to take the appropriate legal action. By contacting an experienced attorney from our firm immediately and reviewing the facts of your case, it can be more accurately decided what action to take. Although monetary compensation cannot bring back the life that was wrongfully taken, it is a way to seek justice for their death, so do not wait to consult a lawyer from Lanier Law Group, P.A. today.

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