Army investigates female soldier’s death at Fort Hood
The Army is investigating the death of another female soldier who complained of sexual harassment at Fort Hood, Texas, the same base where Army Spc. Vanessa Guillen was murdered three years prior.
Pvt. Ana Basalduaruiz, 20, a combat engineer who had served with the 1st Calvary Division for the past 15 months, was found dead on Monday, according to a statement from Fort Hood.
Basalduaruiz’s death comes weeks after she apparently complained to her mother about her superior and other peers sexually harassing her, her family told Noticias Telemundo, a Spanish-language news outlet owned by NBC.
The Fort Hood release made no mention of any sexual harassment allegations, but it said the Army Criminal Investigation Division is “actively investigating the facts and circumstances surrounding her death.” In addition, Basalduaruiz’s chain of command “is in contact with her family to keep them updated, receive any concerns, and provide them all releasable information,” according to the Army.
It is not clear whether Basalduaruiz reported any sexual harassment while at Fort Hood, located about 150 miles southwest of Dallas.
The Army’s release did not include any additional details surrounding her death, though her family told Noticias Telemundo that she was found dead in a maintenance bay and it was indicated that her death was a suicide.
Fort Hood has historically struggled with homicide, suicide and sexual assault among its troops, with 50 suicides and 11 homicides investigated in the last five years, according to 2021 data.
Guillen was killed there in April 2020, and her death launched a sweeping probe into sexual assault and violence at the base. The investigations led to 14 leaders being relieved or suspended from their positions and several policy changes.
The Army also said it would establish an independent office for handling sex crimes that is removed from the chain of command.
Like Basalduaruiz, Guillen complained of sexual harassment from a fellow soldier before she was murdered by another. The suspected servicemember, Spc. Aaron Robinson, shot and killed himself when pursued by police.
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