Almost two and a half months after the disappearance of Private Vanessa Guillén, the FBI and U.S. Army investigators were finally able to connect the two suspects to her death thanks to cell phone records. Here’s what we know.
TEXAS — FBI agents and Army investigators were able to connect two suspects to the disappearance and death of Private First Class (PFC) Vanessa Guillén through cell phone records, text messages, and interviews with witnesses. But their crucial witness was one of the suspects.
Cecily Aguilar who admitted to investigators her involvement, in this case, helped hide the human remains with her boyfriend, 20-year-old Specialist (SPC) Aaron Robinson, days before he took his own life.
Before her disappearance, Guillén, a Houston native, told her mother that a sergeant sexually harassed her on the base. The Guillén family attorney, Natalie Khawam, said at a press conference Wednesday, the 20-year-old was about to make a formal complaint before she went missing.
According to an FBI criminal complaint, the Army called the FBI for help on April 23, one day after Guillén disappeared from Fort Hood. Witnesses told investigators Guillen left the arms room where she was working on the base to another arms room to meet with Robinson. He said they were documenting serial numbers of weapons and equipment.
Read the FBI Criminal Complaint HERE:
Guillen’s phone records revealed the last text she sent on her phone was to Robinson’s phone. Investigators confirmed in the report that Robinson was one of the last persons who saw Guillén. The Army Criminal Investigation Division interviewed Robinson on April 28, 2020. He said in the interview Guillén left the armory after they read serial numbers on the equipment, and he went to his home off base that he shared with his girlfriend, Cecily Aguilar. He said he returned to Fort Hood around 6:30 p.m. that night to use a government computer to enroll in a training class.
Two witnesses told the FBI that on April 22, they saw Robinson pulling a large “tough box” with wheels from the arms room. The witnesses said the box looked very heavy, and they saw the soldier put it into his vehicle and drive away.
On May 19, Robinson permitted investigators to search his cell phone records. Investigators found multiple phone calls between Robinson and his girlfriend during the night of April 22, and early around 3:30 a.m. on April 23. The calls between the two continued all day.
The FBI interviewed Aguilar on June 19, and she told them that she had been with Robinson all night on April 22. According to the criminal complaint, agents asked her if she was with her boyfriend all night, then why did he call her several times that evening. She later admitted to the FBI that she had lied.
Army investigators tracked Robinson’s whereabouts on April 22 through his cell phone, and they found he was along the Leon River near Belton, Texas. The complaint states “SPC Robinson’s cell phone remained in the area for approximately 2 hours.” Aguilar’s cell phone data also revealed she was near the Leon River at the same time.
Contractors Working on a Fence Found Human Remains
Army investigators, Bell County Sheriff’s deputies, and Texas Rangers searched an area along the Leon River on June 21. According to the complaint, they made a discovery: “What appeared to be the burned remains of a plastic tote or tough box were found nearby in an area near where SPC Robinson’s phone pinged.” Investigators smelled an odor of decomposition, but they found no remains in that area.
On June 30, contractors working on a fence adjacent to the Leon River in Belton made the gruesome discovering. They found human remains scattered everywhere.
Aguilar Confessed to the FBI That Her Boyfriend Killed Guillén With a Hammer
The day the human remains were found, Aguilar confessed to investigators Robinson killed Guillén on April 22. “…He struck a female soldier in the head with a hammer multiple times at his arms room, killing her on Fort Hood,” stated the complaint.
Aguilar described how Robinson put Guillén in a box and took it to a location near the Leon River. She also confessed to have seen Guillen’s body when he opened the box.
Aguilar described to investigators how they dismembered Guillén’s body, tried to burn the remains, the complaint said.
The Army confined Robinson to his barracks on Fort Hood during the investigation, but he fled the base on June 30. Aguilar decided to help investigators and called Robinson on her cell phone. The complaint said, “…he never denied anything they did to Vanessa Guillén and her body.” Later in another call, Aguilar made to Robinson allegedly told her “baby they found pieces, they found pieces.” He was referring to the human remains found near the river.
Killeen police located Robinson within the city limits in early hours on July 1. As officers approached, Robinson took out a gun and killed himself.
Aguilar now faces federal charges of conspiracy to alter, destroy, mutilate or conceal evidence corruptly.
Friday evening, the FBI told The Americano that Aguilar has been moved from the Bell County jail to the McLennan County Jail in Waco, Texas. She will make her first appearance in court on federal charges on Monday.
This is a developing story.