The parents of missing Indiana University student Lauren Spierer, who vanished on June 3, 2011, have filed a lawsuit against the three men who were the last people to see Spierer the night of her disappearance. Spierer’s parents, Charlene and Rob Spierer, named Corey Rossman, Jason Rosenbaum and Michael Beth in the suit and allege that the three men’s negligent actions may have led to their daughter's disappearance or possible death.
The lawsuit was filed at a Monroe Circuit Court in Indiana on May 31, just days before the two-year anniversary of her disappearance, ABC News reports. It has since moved on to federal court. In the lawsuit, the Spierers accuse the three men of providing alcohol to their daughter, who was underage at the time, and then leaving her to fend for herself when she was visibly intoxicated.
"Spierer's abandonment in an intoxicated and disoriented state in the early morning hours of June 3, 2011, in an area known for criminal acts contributed to her disappearance and presumed injuries and death," the lawsuit states.
Spierer disappeared after a long night of drinking with friends. Despite arduous search efforts, her body was never found.
The Spierers, who have remained steadfastly vocal about their daughter’s disappearance for the past two years, said that they only filed the suit now because Indiana has a two-year statute of limitations in wrongful deaths and injuries cases and they would have lost certain legal rights if they had not proceeded. They added that they did so with “great reluctance.”
They have previously taken to task many of the men who were with their daughter on that night for not being more forthcoming and for quickly hiring lawyers. "Any parent in search of information about a missing child would use every resource available to them," the Spierers said in a statement. "Therefore, we intend to use the rights afforded by the civil justice system to obtain answers to questions that have gone unanswered for too long. We fully expect that those with relevant information will cooperate with this process."
The parents of Spierer's boyfriend at the time of her death, Jesse Wolff, have defended their son's decision not to take a polygraph test administered by local police. They have also accused the Spierers of lying about the circumstances surrounding their daughter's disappearance.
"If Jesse was guilty of anything, he was guilty of taking care of Lauren, who had some serious drug issues," Jesse Wolff's mother, Nadine, told a local paper, CBS reports. "She would abuse to the point where she would black out. Jesse always threatened to call and tell her parents, and she said, 'If you do, I'll break up with you.'"
The suit includes many details of the night of the young girl's disappearance, including that she spent the beginning of the night at a party at Rosenbaum’s. According to the suit, she “consumed alcohol supplied by Rosenbaum.” The legal document quotes Mike Beth as describing Spierer as “extremely intoxicated” at the party and saying that Rossman then urged her to go with him to Kilroy’s, a local sports bar.
Spierer accompanied Rossman to Kilroy’s, where Spierer reportedly consumed “multiple additional alcoholic beverages over the course of approximately one hour,” ABC’s Indianapolis affiliate WRTV reports. Witnesses said she had trouble standing on her own and needed Rossman’s help to walk. Spierer later left the bar without her shoes.
Spierer and Rossman then returned to Smallwood Plaza, where Spierer lived and where multiple witnesses said she was “distressed, incoherent and nonresponsive.” The suit also alleges that, once inside the apartment complex, Rossman got into a fight with other men who criticized him for not assisting Spierer. The suit claims that Rossman reportedly didn’t help Spierer into her apartment after that encounter but was later seen carrying her across his back “through an alley in the direction of his residence.” Rossman’s roommate, Beth, said that he asked Spierer to sleep on their couch but that she refused, asking to go back to her own residence, and Beth instead brought her to Rosenbaum’s apartment. Beth then returned home.
Rosenbaum reportedly contacted mutual friends, asking if someone could pick her up and help her back to her apartment, but, when none responded, he let her go home by herself, briefly watching her from the window at approximately 4:30 a.m. Rosenbaum is the last person known to have seen Spierer while she was alive.
The suit concludes that, in the two years that have elapsed since her disappearance, Spierer’s body has never been found, and she is “presumed to have suffered injuries that resulted in her death."