Vigil and car ride held in the East End to honor Fort Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen

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Sunday, July 12, 2020
Vigil and car ride held in the East End to honor Fort Hood soldier Vanessa Guillen
REST IN PEACE VANESSA! Family and friends gathered in the historic East End neighborhood to call for justice for Vanessa Guillen.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Friends, family and loved ones gathered in Houston's historic East End to honor the life of Vanessa Guillen Saturday evening.

A massive car ride was held on Saturday afternoon beginning at Foodarama and ending with a vigil at Taqueria del Sol.

Motorcycles, lowriders, high show trucks and other vehicles were filled with elected officials and community members who rallied together behind the family and friends of Vanessa.

Hours after the car ride, a vigil was held to call for justice in Guillen's case.

RELATED: Army Secretary agrees to independent investigation into handling of Vanessa Guillen murder case, Texas Congresswoman says

Guillen, who had been missing since April 22, was killed and dismembered by U.S. Army Specialist Aaron Robinson, a 20-year-old soldier from Calumet City, Illinois. He took his own life before he could be taken into custody, federal and military investigators have said.

Cecily Aguilar, a 22-year-old civilian from Killeen, was arrested and charged with one count of conspiring to tamper with evidence for allegedly helping hide Guillen's body.

The attorney for Guillen's family, Natalie Khawam, said she discovered at least two alleged incidents of sexual harassment -- a superior walking in on Guillen showering and another verbally assaulting her with vulgar remarks in Spanish. Khawam said she's worried about how this case might turn out. She said Guillen told loved ones she didn't want to report the sexual harassment out of fear of retaliation.

But on July 2, Fort Hood officials refuted those allegations, with Special Agent Damon Phelps, who is with the Army's Criminal Investigation Command, saying, "There is no credible information that Specialist Robinson sexually harassed Specialist Guillen."

Guillen's family has been critical of Fort Hood's handling of her case, accusing the Army of lying to them.

In an interview with ABC13's Steve Campion, Guillen's mother called Fort Hood leaders "clowns in a circus."

Over the last couple of weeks, calls have grown for not only a Congressional investigation, but also for Latinas not to join the Army after Guillen's disappearance.


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