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Lawsuit Against Army Show Can't Hide Assault

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  • The family of murdered US Army soldier Vanessa Gillen has filed a $35 million lawsuit against the Army.
  • Gillen’s sister, Myra, told an insider that she hopes the lawsuit will “open the door to justice.”
  • Mayra told Insider that she believes the military can no longer ignore the issue of sexual violence.

The sister of murdered U.S. Army soldier Vanessa Gillen says her family’s $35 million lawsuit against the Army shows the Army can no longer cover up sexual violence. says.

Gillen, 20, was sexually harassed, killed, and dismembered while on duty at the Fort Hood military base in Texas in 2020, according to an investigation by military officials.

Her family said she was sexually harassed multiple times before she died but was too scared to report it. and told his family that he wanted to commit suicide.

The family filed a claim for $35 million in damages with the War Department last Friday.

According to the complaint, Gillen “has been repeatedly sexually harassed by multiple higher levels of the chain of command” and “has been subjected to emotional distress, terror, emotional distress, physical injury, sexual harassment, rape, and rape as a result. was suffering from the death of Months before she was killed, she was sodomized and physically assaulted.”

The family also accused the Army of not initially addressing reports of sexual harassment. argued that “sexual harassment was not a crime.”

‘No real accountability’

Gillen’s older sister, Myra, told an insider that the high profile lawsuit shows the military can no longer ignore the issue of sexual violence and hopes the “door to justice” will be opened. He added that he was.

“No real accountability for aggressors and abusers [in the military]Gillen told an insider, “We need more severe punishment. Otherwise, this behavior will continue to increase and be seen as normal in the military world.”

“I would like to continue working on my sister’s case until full justice is achieved,” she added.

Natalie Kawam, a lawyer for the Gillen family, told insider Yunji Han:

“I’m Vanessa Gillen”

Sexual harassment in the military has surged dramatically over the past two years.

Although women make up only 16.5% of the U.S. military, nearly one in four military personnel are sexually active while in the military, citing a 2018 study published in the journal Trauma, Violence & Abuse. I am reporting that I have reported assault.

Gillen’s murder drew national attention, prompting other service members to advance stories of sexual assault in the U.S. military.

Two former servicemen previously told Insider they were afraid to report their stories to the military, as Gillen did, and lacked internal support for doing so.

Mayra Guillén told Insider that she has devoted most of her time to running the “I am Vanessa Guillén” foundation since Vanessa died more than two years ago.

Last December, their efforts paid off. President Joe Biden signed into law “I am the Vanessa Gillen Act.” The law excluded military commanders from sexual assault investigations and criminalized sexual harassment under the Uniform Military Justice Code.

The US Army did not respond to Insider’s request for comment on the story. A spokesperson told Insider earlier this week: