(KWKT) – The U.S. Army released its findings Friday of an investigation into the events surrounding the death of Spc. Vanessa Guillén at Fort Hood.
Guillén died on April 22, 2020, killed by Spc. Aaron Robinson, officials believe. Investigators said in the report that Robinson managed to flee, thanks to a series of missteps and fatally shot himself.
Among the report’s findings, investigators say Guillén was sexually harassed and reported it on two separate occasions. They say Guillén’s leaders failed to take appropriate action, and the allegations were not moved up the chain of command.
Investigators also say Robinson did not harass Guillén, but that he did sexually harass another soldier between April 2019 to September 2019.
Authorities believe Robinson bludgeoned Guillén to death in April 2020, transporting her body in a large cargo box off the base before dismembering her and setting fire to her remains.
The report does say Fort Hood leadership conducted a well-coordinated search for Spc. Guillén after her disappearance, determining quickly that she likely didn’t leave voluntarily.
After finding her remains on the evening of June 30, the Army held Robinson, but “poor communication” allowed him to flee a conference room and leave the base, killing himself before investigators could find him.
According to the report, the acting senior commander of Fort Hood also misjudged the significance of Spc. Guillén’s disappearance and was overly reluctant to engage the media, misjudging how big of an event it would become. Her disappearance prompted a search that would garner national headlines and social media attention for months.
By the time Fort Hood reversed course, the investigators say the post had lost the trust of the Guillén family and damaged the trust, confidence and reputation of Fort Hood and the U.S. Army.
You can read the full report using the download link below.
Gen. Michael X. Garrett, the commanding general of U.S. Army Forces Command, directed the relief of five current or former leaders in the 3rd Cavalry Regiment. Three of them will also receive general officer memorandums of reprimands.
Gen. Garrett also directed Lt. Gen. Pat White, commanding general of III Corps, to take further action against seven other additional officers and non-commissioned officers. An eighth non-commissioned officer will be handled by a separate command. All will also receive General Officer Memorandums of Reprimands.