By Jessica Dean
CLAYTON, NJ (CBS) – One year after his daughter’s murder, a New Jersey father is suing her killer’s parents to hold them responsible.
In October 2012, 12-year-old Autumn Pasquale was choked to death by then 15-year-old Justin Robinson.
Robinson pleaded guilty to the crime and is now serving his sentence.
But in an exclusive interview, Autumn’s father tells Eyewitness News that the responsibility for his daughter’s death doesn’t end there.
“Murdering my daughter at 15, something had to lead up to that,” Anthony Pasquale says. “I want to find out from the parents, what did you do? Why did your kid do this to my kid?”
In September, Pasquale filed a civil suit accusing Justin Robinson of wrongful death.
It also accuses his parents, Anita Saunders and Alonzo Robinson, of negligent supervision, in effect holding them responsible for Autumn’s death.
The suit also alleges that when Robinson choked Autumn, it was a learned behavior he had witnessed in his own home.
But Robinson’s mother, Anita Saunders, contests that.
“It wasn’t learned. It was just something that, unfortunately, happened,” she says.
Saunders says she was the victim of domestic abuse, but that she divorced her husband to get away from it.
So far, Alonzo Robinson has not answered the complaint, and Eyewitness News was unable to reach him.
“It’s sad for anybody to think that a parent can be held accountable for what their child does. We, as parents, raise our children best as we can, teach them right from wrong. But once our children go outside that door, we have no clue what they’re doing,” Saunders says.
Pasquale has a long road to winning his case, according to distinguished litigator Tom Kline.
But this father, haunted by the death of his daughter, will forge ahead.
“She was everything a father could dream of, and I had the perfect girl,” an emotional Anthony Pasquale said. “I miss her so much.”
A feeling he says will never go away.