A 30-year-old Black U.S. Army drill sergeant was fatally shot on New Years Day in San Antonio, Texas, in an unsolved incident that has cut short a promising career in the military and the soldier’s life with her young son.
Sergeant Jessica Mitchell died from multiple gunshot wounds in the early morning hours of January 1, reports WOAI NBC News in San Antonio.
Mitchell was a 68E Dental Specialist assigned on Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston. She was on holiday leave when the shooting occurred, and was found in her car on the north side of San Antonio by first responders and later pronounced dead in hospital.
Mitchell leaves behind a 10-year-old son, according to WOAI.
Her father Mayo Mitchell, said that the killing of his daughter follows the fatal shooting of her brother, Justice Mitchell, in June of 2017.
“It’s heartbreaking because what this did is reopen the wound and made it worse,” Mayo told WOAI.
Both the San Antonio Police Department and the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division are investigating Mitchell’s killing.
“We are devastated by the tragic loss of Drill Sergeant Jessica Mitchell,” Maj. Gen. Dennis LeMaster, MEDCoE Commanding General said in a statement. “Our sincere condolences go out to her family and friends. We are focused on supporting Drill Sergeant Mitchell’s family as well as her soldiers during this extremely difficult time.”
Mitchell’s family is also seeking the public’s help to identify what happened to the young soldier.
Just this year, 20-year-old U.S. Army Specialist Vanessa Guillen went missing from the Fort Hood army base in Texas. After her family launched a public campaign to locate her, the army conducted a widespread search for the Latina soldier during which Guillen’s dismembered and burned remains were found near a river. A fellow army specialist who was accused in her death later killed himself before he could be charged, reports the New York Times.
An army investigation into Fort Hood after Guillen’s death identified a culture of sexual harassment and assault there, and ultimately led to 14 command leaders at that base being either suspended or fired in December.