BROWN COUNTY, Ind. – The Brown County prosecutor said he believes Daniel Messel, the man convicted of killing IU student Hannah Wilson, is also connected to the disappearance of IU student Lauren Spierer.
Prosecutor Ted Adams told the Bloomington Herald Times Messel may have played a key part in the Spierer case, which happened on June 3, 2011. The 20-year-old student was last seen intoxicated around 4:30 a.m. near her Smallwood Plaza apartment.
Adams released a statement on the theory:
I have been consistent with my belief regarding Daniel Messel's possible involvement with Lauren Spierer's disappearance. I believe that, in my personal opinion, her disappearance is consistent with Daniel Messel's modus operandi. I am not a part of the Lauren Spierer investigation. I am sure there are other theories and persons of interest. I additionally readily admit that I have absolute tunnel vision regarding Daniel Messel due to learning about him during my sixteen (16) months of trial preparation for Hannah Wilson's murder. I believe he absolutely could be responsible for Lauren Spierer's disappearance. Until recently, the media has never asked my opinion regarding Ms. Spierer. Others have, such as Ms. Spierer's parents, and I have explained to them Messel's pattern that led me to develop such an opinion. It is just that: an opinion based simply upon a pattern of conduct over the course of four (4) years. My opinion without any real evidence remains exactly that it is: an opinion. It should not be valued as anything more than the opinion of a simple prosecuting attorney. I trust that the law enforcement professionals at the Bloomington Police Department are doing their very best to solve Lauren Spierer's disappearance, and that they remain committed to do so.
No detailed information on Spierer’s disappearance have been released by police.
Adams said he believes Messel was also connected to several other incidents involving college-aged women who reported identical vehicle descriptions, according to the Bloomington Herald Times.
In September 2016, Messel was sentenced to 80 years in prison for the murder of Wilson. He was found guilty after Wilson’s body was found hours after she was reported missing, in the wooded area of Plum Creek in Brown County in November 2015. His cellphone was laying nearby and investigators found her blood, hair and DNA in Messel’s 2012 Kia SUV.
In April 2017, Messel appealed his conviction arguing that the sentence was “unfair and excessive.”
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