Deputy commander pleads for information about missing Texas-based soldier Vanessa Guillen

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Monday, June 22, 2020
Fort Hood official speaks publicly about Vanessa Guillen
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This is what a deputy commander at Fort Hood is saying about the search for Vanessa Guillen and what he wants the public to do.

KILLEEN, Texas -- Officials from Fort Hood, an Army base in Killeen, Texas, are making a new push to help find 20-year-old missing soldier Vanessa Guillen, who disappeared on April 22.

Sunday night, the public heard from a top official from the base for the first time.

Fort Hood Deputy Commander Major General Scott Efflandt appeared in a video Sunday evening, pleading for the public's help to find Guillen, a Houston native.

"We want to bring Vanessa home as efficiently and as rapidly as possible. And towards that end, I'm asking for your assistance," Efflandt said. "We need to bring Vanessa back to her Army family and to bring her back to her family, and we won't stop this effort until we're successful."

According to investigators, Guillen's car keys, barracks room key, ID and wallet were found in the armory room where she was working on the base on the day she disappeared.

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

RELATED: Vanessa Guillen missing: Family says Texas-based soldier made sexual harassment claim before disappearance

Fort Hood said anyone with information about Guillen is urged to call 254-495-7767. A $50,000 reward is being offered for information as well.

The base said it is already grieving the loss of one soldier, referring to Private Gregory Morales, who had been missing since Aug. 2019.

Morales' remains were found near Fort Hood over the weekend. Officials say foul play is suspected.

Despite social media rumors, authorities do not believe the two cases are related.

Officials are also asking for information in the investigation into Morales' death and said the public can contact Crime Stoppers at 254-526-8477 or submit an online tip via their website.