When Lauren McCluskey, a student-athlete at The University of Utah, met a bouncer at a local bar, it seemed like the start of a fairy-tale romance. However, Lauren’s friends grew concerned by his increasingly controlling behavior and urged her to stop seeing him. Soon after, Lauren discovered that her boyfriend wasn’t who he said he was ― his real name was Melvin Rowland, a 37-year-old sex offender who had recently been released from prison. Shocked and afraid, Lauren ended the relationship and contacted campus police when he began extorting and harassing her. After over a week of repeatedly asking campus police, local law enforcement and school officials for help, Lauren was kidnapped on her way back from class and later found dead in a car. In a new two-hour “20/20,” anchor David Muir and ESPN journalists T.J. Quinn and Nicole Noren explore the events leading up to Lauren’s murder and investigate the institutional failures of the systems she trusted to protect her.
Sarah Jautz firstname.lastname@example.org