Partial human remains were discovered in the area of the Leon River, in Bell County, Texas, but have yet to be confirmed to be those of missing Ft. Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen. Guillen is the second soldier to disappear under mysterious circumstances from Ft. Hood in as many years.
The body parts were reportedly found within walking distance from where investigators found the body of private Gregory Wedel-Morales on June 19. Wedel-Morales is the Ft. Hood soldier who disappeared last year.
Army CID released a statement, “After receiving additional information, agents have discovered what has been described as partial human remains after analysis from a forensic anthropologist . . . No confirmation as to the identity of the remains has been made at this point and we ask for the media and public’s understanding that the identification process can take time. Due to the ongoing criminal investigation, no further information will be released at this time.”
However, Tim Miller, the founder of Texas EquuSearch, told ABC13, “The search for Vanessa is now over.” Miller’s firm is dedicated to finding missing persons and had assisted in national and international searches, including the search for Natalie Holloway in Aruba. While Texas EquuSearch has been involved in the search for the past several weeks, Miller describes the discovery as a “shallow grave.”
“It’s believed to be her … pending positive identification which that will have to be determined by the medical examiner’s office, but I’m confident to say the search for Vanessa is now over,” said Miller.
The U.S. Criminal Investigation Command stated last week that foul play was suspected in Guillen’s disappearance; however it will not confirm if there is a person of interest.
The Army’s Criminal Investigation Command has also launched an investigation into allegations that Guillen was sexually harassed when it was discovered that Guillen had revealed to friends and colleagues that she didn’t want to report the harassment out of fear of reprisals.
“I opened an investigation concerning the information provided by the Guillen Family that Pfc. Vanessa Guillen was harassed prior to her disappearance,” said Commander of the 3rd Cavalry Regiment Col. Ralph Overland. “I take allegations of sexual harassment very seriously and we are conducting a thorough investigation.”
Crime at Ft. Hood has steadily risen over the last decade. Two active shooter incidents with substantial loss of life were categorized by Barack Obama as workplace violence rather than terror attacks. The base saw 26 violent crimes each year in 2012 and 2013, including aggravated assault, child pornography, kidnapping, homicide, rape, attempted rapes and robbery, according to Fort Hood Herald staff reporter Rose Thayer.
Violent crimes committed each year, include aggravated assault, child pornography, kidnapping, homicide, rape, attempted rapes and robbery, and soldiers dying from gunshot wounds, which are still under investigation.
One soldier was accused in a triple-murder suicide, and in 2015, the one-time coordinator of a sexual assault program at Ft. Hood, was found guilty of running a prostitution ring. Ft. Hood’s sordid history of unsolved crimes leaves people scratching their heads, wondering what is going on at the Texas facility.
Ft. Hood’s ongoing crime has garnered the installation a reputation as a less-than-desirable duty station despite quality training areas, comprehensive base resources and legendary Army units, according to David Green, a former senior noncommissioned officer who spent 11 years at Ft Hood.
Guillen was last seen April 22, 2020 in the parking lot of her Regimental Engineer Squadron Headquarters, 3rd Cavalry Regiment, according to Army Criminal Investigative Special Agents.
Her car keys, barracks room key, ID and wallet were found in the armory room where she was working earlier in the day, but her cell phone has not been recovered, according to ABC7 News.
To fully understand, it’s probably a case of “you have to be there.”