What happened to Lauren Spierer? College student disappeared 10 years ago; where the investigation stands today


BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WXIN) — 10 years since she was last seen, the question, “What happened to Lauren Spierer?” remains unanswered.

The Indiana University student disappeared in the early morning hours of June 3, 2011. Since then, police and her family have continued to search for answers.

It all started during a night out with friends, but what actually happened that night is still a mystery.

According to Bloomington police, Spierer was out early on June 3 with friends and acquaintances at Kilroy’s Sports Bar. Police say she went back to her home, but ended up at an acquaintance’s apartment. Police say that person was also with her that night.

Around 4:30 a.m., investigators say Spierer decided to walk home alone. She was last seen near the intersection of 11th and College.

What happened after that has left many people wondering, especially IU students attending the school at the same time.

“We came back to the fall semester, and I mean there were fliers everywhere — you couldn’t look anywhere. Every student had to have known about it,” said IU graduate Audrey Campbell.

“My friends and I, we were aware of it,” remembered Campbell. “I had a friend that worked at the paper so she was doing a fair amount of coverage on it.”

Spierer was reported missing by a male friend the following afternoon. Since then, Bloomington police, along with other law enforcement agencies, national search groups and volunteers, have searched numerous lakes and forested areas, as well as conducted countless interviews.

Despite the amount of time passed, Bloomington police are not calling Spierer’s disappearance a cold case.

“Many times we are asked if Lauren’s case is a cold case,” said Chief Michael Diekhoff, “and our answer to that is an unequivocal ‘No.’”

“A cold case is a case where no information or leads have come in, and the case file sits dormant.” He added, “That has never been the case regarding Lauren, and there has always been something to follow up on.”

Spierer’s parents filed a civil negligence lawsuit against two men who were with Lauren the night she disappeared.

However, a judge dismissed the case in 2014, and that decision was later upheld in a federal appeals court.

According to court documents, Spierer’s parents said the two men owed Lauren a “duty of care,” but continued to give her alcohol despite her being already intoxicated that night.

In the ruling, a federal judge pointed to lack of evidence in showing the two men were responsible for her disappearance.

Bloomington police declined an on-camera interview, but said in a statement they were committed to doing their job and finding Spierer, no matter how much time has passed.

NewsNation affiliate WXIN also reached out to Spierer’s parents, but they declined to speak with any media this year.

Charlene Spierer, Lauren’s mother, did post a message to the official Lauren Spierer family updates page on Facebook expressing her continued grief for her loss and hope answers may come one day.

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