The attorney for the family of missing Ft. Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen says that they believe that the remains of Guillen have been found as Ft. Hood officials confirm that one suspect took his own life and another has been arrested in connection to Guillen's disappearance.
Partial human remains were found close to the Leon River in Bell County, an area of interest in the search for Guillen, yesterday and Ft. Hood officials say they are still processing the scene.
The name of the soldier who took his life is not being released at this time. The civilian suspect who has been arrested is the estranged wife of a former Fort Hood soldier and is currently in custody in the Bell County Jail.
Attorney Natalie Khawam was joined by members of Guillen's family at a press conference from Washington, D.C. Besides providing an update on the search for Guillen, they also asked for a congressional investigation as well as asked for legislation to be enacted to protect members of the U.S. military from sexual harassment and sexual assault.
U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard joined Khawam and the Guillen family in calling for congressional oversight to find out what exactly happened to Guillen.
In the press conference, family members said the man who shot himself had harassed Guillen while she was on base. "The person that killed her is the one who sexually harassed her - the one who walked into the shower," said Khawam.
Guillen’s sister Mayra added that she had previously met the suspect and could tell something about him wasn’t right. "That subject I met him, not knowing that he had something to do with it, I felt something was telling and I wasn't wrong, he still had the nerve to laugh and now he kills himself."
"We need the congressional investigation as soon as possible. They lied to us since day one. Fort hood is hiding. I don't know what, I don't know who," she added.
FOX 7 Austin reached out to C-I-D to try and confirm, but no additional details were being given at this time.
Throughout the investigation, the Guillen family has accused the army of a cover-up. "They didn't keep my sister safe, they always try to cover up for each other. Why? My sister is a human too. She deserves respect and deserves to be heard," her sister Lupe said. "My mother does not deserve this. I don’t deserve this. My family does not deserve this. Vanessa Guillen did not deserve this. My sister Vanessa Guillen was sexually harassed yet nothing was done to it. Fort Hood lacks the responsibility, safety and respect because they didn’t respect my sister."
The family added that they will do whatever it takes to bring about justice for Vanessa. “If those criminals are still out there, take my word, that we will not rest, we will not stop, and we will keep fighting until you are behind bars,” said Guillen’s sister, Lupe.
20-year-old Guillen was last seen April 22 between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. in the parking lot of Regimental Engineer Squadron Headquarters, 3rd Cavalry Regiment on Fort Hood, Texas and has not been heard from since.
Her car keys, barracks room key, identification card, and wallet were later found in the armory room where she was working earlier in the day. She was last seen in the parking lot wearing a black t-shirt and purple fitness-type pants.
Get breaking news alerts in the FOX 7 Austin News app. It is FREE!
Fort Hood says that the 3rd Cavalry Regiment commander, Col. Ralph Overland, has appointed an investigating team led by a senior investigating officer (IO) to conduct a commander’s investigation, referred to as an “AR 15-6 Investigation” into allegations that Pfc. Guillen was sexually harassed.
The Fort Hood Senior Commander, Maj. Gen. Scott Efflandt, III Corps deputy commanding general, will hold a press conference at 2 p.m. tomorrow (July 2) in the III Corps Headquarters on the current status of the investigation.
At the press conference, the senior commander will be joined by Fort Hood's U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID) and representatives from law enforcement agencies who are assisting with the investigation.