Mary Lauterbach Talks To "Today"

By: Dave Jordan/Heather King
By: Dave Jordan/Heather King

The mother of slain Marine Maria Lauterbach appeared on NBC's Today Show Tuesday morning.

Mary Lauterbach told Matt Lauer she wanted to defend Maria since there was so much information "floating around" about her daughter since she was reported missing in mid-December.

Lauterbach says when she reported her daughter missing, she was asked to email detectives everything she could think of about her daughter. Mary Lauterbach says she wrote in the email that Maria had a history of compulsive lying, but that piece of information taken by itself was made into something more than it really is.

NBC's Matt Lauer noted that Maria had been caught lying about saying her dad had killer her brother, and that may have hurt her credibility. Mary Lauterbach described Maria's early childhood as "difficult." She had been adopted as a toddler.

Mary Lauterbach also explained how Maria struggled with being away from home for the first time when she moved to Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville. Maria's uncle, also appearing on "Today," said Maria called home twice a day, but was always more interested in talking about what was happening with the family, rather than how her life was in the Marines.

Lawyers for the Lauterbach family said the military could have done more to protect Mara after she accused Cesar Laurean of rape. They said Maria was moved to a different building but was still in the same unit as Laurean and still had to see Laurean regularly. They suggested Maria should have been moved to another unit or even another Marine base.

Mara's uncle also talked about how Maria loved the Marines and how the family supported the military.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by kathy vassallo Location: greenville,nc on Jan 29, 2008 at 08:30 PM
    It is horrible and sensless what happened to poor young lady. What bothered me about the whole issue was that I didn't know North Carolina had the law where if a pregnant woman is killed her baby ins't included in the murder charge. Anyone who kills a pregnant woman should be charged with double murder and I agree the law in North Carolina needs to be changed. My heart goes out the young lady's family and my prays are with them. The best thing for the young man is just to come clean because trying to run from everything is just going to make it harder on him. I wonder how his family is doing with all this? I so easy at times to point fingers at people and quickly judge but, in the long run we( the people and the media) may never find out the whole truth. The only ones the really know the truth are Maria, the young man and God above.
  • by me Location: jax on Jan 29, 2008 at 01:58 PM
    You still can't say she was raped...there was no evidence. A he said/she said. He said he didn't have any sexual contact with her. If he lied and they did, the baby would have proved that. So maybe there wasn't evidence of rape but adultery. And he would have been tried on those charges. I'm not saying she was lying or not because I don't know. But, my feeling is, if he didn't do anything wrong then he wouldn't have killed her and if he didn't kill her then why is he on the run. To me, actions speak louder than words.
  • by B'V Location: JACKSONVILLE on Jan 29, 2008 at 11:51 AM
    EVIDENTLY SHE WASN'T LYING, BECAUSE NOW SHE'S DEAD BECAUSE NO ONE WOULD LISTEN
  • by me Location: jax on Jan 29, 2008 at 11:18 AM
    Bert, I am not sure if the mother believed her or not. I know I will probably be flamed for this but it's true. Mary said she told Maria "You can't be making this stuff up. You have to be telling the truth. If you're lying it could ruin careers". Now, of course she said that if Maria was telling the truth, she needed to step up and tell for the safety of other females. I can't say what I would or would not have done. I would say that my first thoughts and statements would be "Oh, God, are you ok? Do you need me to come to you?" It doesn't help that Maria lied and said her father killed her brother by throwing a lamp at him. I am not trying to blame the family, military, or detectives. The only one to blame is Laurean and anyone that may have helped him. And Sarah, Maria's family isn't doing anything to help find Laurean. In fact, they have stated they are not mad at him. The only ones looking for Laurean are FBI and US Marshalls.
  • by sarah Location: nc on Jan 29, 2008 at 08:45 AM
    Bert this is her adopted mother, not her stepmother. If you are going to point fingers at some one for saying the wrong thing, then you need to get your facts straight. This mother has gone throught so much, and is trying her hardest to help authorities find her daughters' killer. Pray for her, and defend her!!!
  • by Bert Location: Rose Hill on Jan 29, 2008 at 05:59 AM
    My sympathy goes out to the family of this young lady and even to the family of her alleged murderer. But before the young lady was found, the Stepmother expressed hereself as though it was funny. If any content was taken out of proportion, it was how the Stepmother drummed on the words that the young lady was a compulsive liar. I felt this Stepmother did not even take the young lady seriously. If you can look back at the views of the Stepmother, the lady is actually smiling and looks as though she is not taking the absence of the young lady seriously. The police are going by what the Stepmother told them. Also, even the uncle stated how the young lady would first lie and then come back and apologize. Stop blaming the police for the info they supplied. Look at the persons that supplied the information to the police. Stop blaming and start finding the real story behind the incident.
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