Remains of Fort Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen identified, family lawyer confirms
AUSTIN, Texas - The lawyer for the family of Vanessa Guillen says Army investigators have identified the remains as the missing soldier's.
"On July 3rd, the Army called me to confirm that the bones, hair and other remains found belong to Vanessa Guillen. We are at a loss for words. This should never have happened. Our country has lost a beautiful young soldier because the system is broken," Attorney Natalie Khawam wrote in a statement to FOX 7 Austin.
On June 30, partial human remains were found close to the Leon River in Bell County in Texas, an area of interest in the search for Guillen. More remains were found in another shallow grave on July 1. The remains were also encased in a cement-like substance.
According to an affidavit, the 20-year-old specialist was bludgeoned to death on April 22 by fellow Spc. Aaron Robinson.
Spc. Aaron David Robinson (Fort Hood)
Robinson's girlfriend, Cecily Aguilar, told military investigators she helped him dismember Guillen, hiding her body near the Leon River. Guillen’s family and attorney Natalie Khawam say Robinson sexually harassed Guillen.
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Robinson committed suicide when authorities confronted him.
Memorials and protests were held July 4 weekend for Guillen. Calls for justice were heard at a march and protest at Discovery Green, in Houston Saturday night.
Sunday, Guillen's cousin, Uriel Guillen Aranda led a protest and march in Austin calling for a congressional investigation into Guillen's case. Participants walked from Republic Square Park to the Capitol.
"U.S. soldiers should be protected inside that base and they failed. They failed their community, they failed my cousin, so I need everybody out there to open their hearts," he said.
RELATED: Memorials held on July 4 weekend for murdered soldier Vanessa Guillen
Aranda found out Guillen’s remains were positively identified, just moments before the march began. "I can’t even cry anymore because I’m just so angry," he said.
Upon conviction on the federal charge, Aguilar faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a maximum $250,000 fine. She remains in custody at this time awaiting her initial appearance in federal court in Waco, says the US Attorney's office.