Arrest Warrant Issued In Death Of Pregnant Marine

January 12, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
It's a case that's riveting the nation. The gruesome discovery of burnt human remains believed to be missing pregnant Marine Maria Lauterbach.Ed Brown, Onslow County Sheriff, says "In the cavity... What we're now calling a shallow grave...we found the remains of an adult female and also the remains of a fetus."

Police are now hunting for Marine Corporal Cesar Laurean. The suspect had been accused of rape by fellow Marine Lance Corporal Maria Lauterbach.

Law enforcement officials say that he is believed to have taken one of Lauterbach's credit cards and used it.. They're hoping they might be able to track him down from that.

While police try to hunt down Laurean some members of her family are critical of the Marine Corps for not doing enough to help her:

Peter Steiner, victim's uncle, says "This young woman was trying to survive...the Marines did not separate these young people....they continued to work together as I've come to find out... .. They did not separate as I've come to find out."

Although her uncle says that she didn't maintain outside contact with Laurean, authorities claim that the pregnant marine had maintained a friendship with Laurean.

Paul Ciccarelli, Camp Lejeune Investigator, says "They carried on some type of friendly relationship after she had reported this incident."

Police now say that it was because of that continued friendship that they didn't consider Laurean a flight risk. But now he appears to be on the run and authorities say they're doing all they can to find him.