The remains of missing Fort Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen have likely been found, but authorities already had evidence from the scene that convinced them Guillen would probably not be found alive.
One of the first pieces of physical evidence found in connection to the disappearance of Guillen was located a week prior to finding human remains in a shallow grave by Leon River. According to Texas EquuSearch founder, Tim Miller, a large storage lid was found near the grave during a previous search of the Leon River area.
KHOU 11 News reports that after finding the lid, investigators thought the “search for Guillen was close to over,” but didn’t realize at the time that remains were buried nearby. A civilian working near Leon River noticed a foul odor a week later after fresh rain hit the area, and immediately contacted authorities.
The lid, according to Miller, was the top to a Pelican storage case. Miller told CrimeOnline that a witness at Fort Hood saw a man struggling to get a black Pelican storage case into a car on April 22, the last day Guillen was seen alive.
Miller added that the man was near the armory room, where Guillen worked. Guillen was inexplicably called into work on the day she vanished, although it was her day off.
Although a medical examiner is currently working to make an official identification, Miller said he’s “99.9%” sure that it was Guillen found buried in the shallow grave. Whoever the dug the grave went to great measures to conceal the body, using cement, rocks, and lime.
Our entire Chavez Community is heartbroken with today’s news. We extend our deepest condolences and offer our thoughts and prayers to the Guillen family. May they be protected in these most difficult times. pic.twitter.com/LJYc8maCx0
— César E. Chavez High School (@ChavezHS_HISD) July 2, 2020
At least two people have been arrested in connection with Guillen’s disappearance, including the former wife of a Fort Hood soldier. Another suspect, identified as junior soldier Aaron Robinson, took his own life early Wednesday morning when police pursued him. He was pronounced dead after reportedly shooting himself in the head.
Fort Hood officials are scheduled to give an update in the case at 2 p.m. Thursday.
Meanwhile, according to ABC 13, the Army promoted Guillen to Specialist on Monday, despite her disappearance.
Check back for updates.
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[Feature Photo: Vanessa Guillen/Handout]