Family of murdered Spc. Vanessa Guillén meet with Army leaders about investigation, reforms

State News

FILE – In this July 30, 2020, file photo slain Army Spc. Vanessa Guillen’s mother Gloria Guillen, right, joined by Vanessa’s sister Lupe Guillen, center, and family attorney Natalie Khawam, speaks as she cries during a news conference on the National Mall in front of Capitol Hill in Washington. The Army said Friday, April 30, 2021, that it has taken disciplinary action against 21 officers and non-commissioned officers at Fort Hood, Texas, in connection with death last year of Spc. Vanessa Guillen, who was missing for about two months before her remains were found. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

HOUSTON (KXAN) — The status of reforms will serve as the focus of talks this week between U.S. Army leaders and the family of murdered Spc. Vanessa Guillén.

The Guillén family and their attorney, Natalie Khawam, will hold a news conference Tuesday afternoon to discuss how their meeting went with Gen. John M. Murray and other military leaders.

A news release stated the two sides are meeting “to discuss new discoveries of the investigation and/or accountability actions for those guilty in the chain of command.”

Guillén’s case drew international attention in April last year after she went missing from Fort Hood and then when her remains were discovered in July along a Bell County river.

Earlier this year, the Army released findings of an investigation into the events surrounding Guillén’s death. She died on April 22, 2020, and authorities believe Spc. Aaron Robinson killed her. Investigators said in the report that Robinson managed to flee after a series of missteps and fatally shot himself.

Among the report’s findings, investigators said Guillén was sexually harassed and reported it on two separate occasions. They said Guillén’s leaders failed to take appropriate action, and the allegations were not moved up the chain of command.

Federal lawmakers introduced the Vanessa Guillén Military Justice Improvement and Increasing Prevention Act in Congress. The bill would take decisions about how to handle sexual assault outside the chain of command and give them to independent military prosecutors.

The news release announcing Tuesday’s press conference stated the Guillén family will also push for this legislation to pass “for change to happen in our armed forces.” Their remarks will happen at a hotel in Houston.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Community Stories

More Community Stories