Ohio Congressman Demands Answers on Death of Maria Lauterbach
Mar 11, 2008
Rep. Mike Turner (OH-03) seeks answers from U.S. Marine Corps on death of Lance Corporal Maria Lauterbach
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman Michael Turner (OH-03) today demanded answers to multiple questions on the death of Marine Lance Corporal Maria Lauterbach. Rep. Turner who represents the Lauterbach family in Vandalia, Ohio, met with the family prior to attending the funeral of Maria Lauterbach in February. At the family’s request, Rep. Turner is requesting answers from the U.S. Marine Corps about Maria Lauterbach’s death.
“The entire nation grieved with the Lauterbach family at the tragic death of Maria and her unborn child. For Maria and other women serving, we must determine what should have been done to protect her and her unborn child,” said Rep. Michael Turner.
“Lance Corporal Lauterbach’s case highlights the need to elevate the protection accorded female military personnel who file claims that they have been sexually assaulted and raises serious questions about the procedures that the military has in place for responding to sexual assault claims,” Rep. Turner said. “I have been briefed by General Michael Regner. He has informed me that the Marine Corps has reviewed their internal procedures, determined that appropriate procedures have been followed and that the ‘matter was concluded’. I disagree.”
On May 11, 2007, Marine Lance Corporal Maria Lauterbach filed a claim that fellow Marine Corporal Cesar Laurean had sexually assaulted her on the base of Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. On or about December 14, 2007, LCpl Maria Lauterbach was murdered and was buried in a shallow grave in the backyard of the home of Cpl Laurean.
Congressman Turner transmitted more than two dozen questions from the Lauterbach family in a letter to General James T. Conway, Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, summarized below:
- After the accusation of rape by LCpl Maria Lauterbach in May of 2007 against Cpl Cesar Laurean, what was done to protect Maria Lauterbach?
- Once accused of rape, did LCpl Lauterbach and Cpl Laurean continue their assignment in the same unit? Would this continued assignment have resulted in regular contact between the two? Would this continued assignment have also resulted in LCpl Lauterbach’s regular contact with Marines who would have been in regular contact (perhaps even maintained close friendships) with Cpl Laurean?
- What details of harassment or physical abuse had been detailed by LCpl Lauterbach during her time of service?
- In view of the confirmation of LCpl Lauterbach’s pregnancy on June 27th, why was no DNA sample taken from Cpl Laurean?
- Is there any system to notify civilian authorities when a person who is the subject of a Military Protective Order moves off base?
- When LCpl Lauterbach did not report for duty on Monday, December 17, 2007, why, in view of the pending rape claim against a fellow Marine, was no attempt made to search for her or question Cpl Laurean?
- Was there any mechanism in place to trigger a special reporting requirement up the chain of command when the victim of a claimed sexual assault goes UA?
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