A jury found ex-marine Cesar Laurean guilty of first degree murder yesterday in the 2007 death of his colleague, Lance Cpl. Maria Lauterbach, who was eight months pregnant at the time. He was sentenced to life in prison. Lauterbach's body was found buried in Laurean's backyard.
Prior to her death, Lauterbach had reported that Laurean, her senior officer at Camp Lejune in North Carolina, raped her. Lauterbach later recanted the rape accusations, but a hearing regarding the alleged incident was scheduled just a few weeks prior to her disappearance, according to CNN. District Attorney Dewey Hudson argued that Laurean was motivated to kill Lauterbach because, "He was a married man. He was her boss. [And] he had sex with her," according to the Associated Press.
The jury deliberated for just three hours before reaching a verdict. They also found him guilty of both fraud and theft because he took Lauterbach's ATM card and tried to use it to procure cash. Juror Brenda Peters told the Associated Press, "everything pointed to the fact that he is the one who did this crime. We went back over every speck of evidence that there was, piece by piece. That's how we reached our verdict."
Media Resources: CNN 8/24/10; Associated Press 8/23/10
12/9/2013 Mixed Results for Afghanistan's Anti-Violence Against Women Law - The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released their annual report on violence against women in Afghanistan yesterday, revealing mixed results of the country's Elimination of Violence against Women Law.
"A Way to Go: An Update on Implementation of the Law on the Elimination of Violence against Women in Afghanistan [PDF]," found that there was a 28 percent increase in reports of violence against women from 2012 to 2013 , but only 17 percent of those were prosecuted under EVAW - a small 2 percent increase from last year.
The law, which was issued by the executive decree of President Hamid Karzai in 2009, criminalizes 22 acts of violence against women and specifies punishment for perpetrators. . . .