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Missing Florida woman's ex-fiance faces wrongful death claim

The family of a Florida woman who disappeared following a 2011 appearance on a television program have sued her former fiance, contending that the men knows what happened to the woman and is ultimately responsible for her death. They recently filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the man, claiming to have uncovered evidence linking him to the woman's disappearance.

The plaintiffs' attorney explained that his clients do not want to believe that the victim is dead, but they still believe she is. They added that they have resorted to a civil case because police investigations into the disappearance have gone cold.

The victim reportedly disappeared on the same day that she and her ex-fiance appeared on The People's Court with a dispute over a lost engagement ring. Witnesses claimed they last saw her leaving her 3-year-old twins at the man's house, but police were unable to find further evidence. They did reportedly discover the woman's cell phone in a nearby lake soon after she went missing, but the trail soon went cold again. They named the ex-fiance as their prime suspect, but were never able to link him to the disappearance. He was never arrested or charged.

During her People's Court appearance, the victim suggested that the suspect had assaulted her in the past and accused him of malicious and vindictive behavior. However, the man's attorney argues that his client is innocent and stressed that he has never been connected to the alleged crime. The attorney noted that the man sympathizes with his former fiancé's family and has fully cooperated with the authorities in their attempt to locate the missing woman. He asserted that the family's lawsuit will do nothing in helping them discover what happened to the victim.

Florida residents sometimes file wrongful death lawsuits when criminal cases are unsuccessful in bringing justice against the parties they deem responsible for the death of a loved one.

Source: People, "Family of Missing People's Court Mom Files Wrongful Death Suit Against Her Ex," Steve Helling, March 7, 2013

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