EVANSVILLE, Ind.–Getting justice for her daughter is why Aleah Beckerle’s mother is suing the man police believe killed her and the owners of the vacant house where she was murdered. Terrance Roach was found guilty two months ago of kidnapping Beckerle, but not of killing her.
He was not convicted of murder, even though police got a confession and DNA evidence.
The civil lawsuit was announced Thursday at a press conference at the law offices of David and Ryan Hatfield, with Cara Beckerle at their side.
“The wrongful actions of Terrance Roach are the direct and approximate cause of the death of Aleah Beckerle,” said attorney Ryan Hatfield, explaining that the lawsuit is against Roach, and S&G Properties, LLC, who owned the house on South Bedford Ave., which is next door to where Roach and his parents lived.
Roach pulled Beckerle, 19, who was disabled, out of her bedroom window and took her to the house on his back, said the police investigation.
“The negligence of S&G Properties allowed for the availability and opportunity for this crime to occur,” said Hatfield. “This property was located in a high crime district of the city and this property was allowed to become a common nuisance and available to the community for criminal activity.”
Hatfield did not discuss a dollar amount or what type of civil penalties he and Beckerle hope to obtain.
“This is about justice,” he said.
Hatfield did not criticize the prosecution extensively, but did say that Beckerle believed Roach should have been convicted of murder. He’s serving 17 years on confinement and abuse of a corpse charges.
“The criminal process that has played out in this case, we don’t believe provided full justice. So, Cara Beckerle comes today and files this lawsuit to seek justice,” said Hatfield. He declined to compare the case to others that have been played out in the media, and stated his law firm will not try the case “in the media”.
Beckerle was murdered in July 2016.
PHOTO: Provided by Evansville PD