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LULAC holds press conference on Fort Hood soldiers death, calls for accountability

LULAC says it is asking the questions, looking for answers and seeking justice.

FORT HOOD, Texas — The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) held a press conference on the death of Fort Hood soldier Ana Basaldua Ruiz, demanding accountability throughout the investigation on Friday, March 17. 

According to LULAC, 21-year-old Ruiz was found dead on the Fort Hood post on Monday, March 13. 

LULAC National Communications Director David Cruz began the news conference by calling back to how the organization was there just three-and-a-half years ago for the death of Vanessa Guillen, a Fort Hood soldier who was murdered on post in 2020.

LULAC National Sergeant at Arms AnaLuisa Carrillo-Tapia also spoke, echoing Cruz's sentiments.

"LULAC is equally concerned over the reports from her family that their daughter was the target of repeated sexual harassments. LULAC demands an immediate, full and transparent investigation into these claims," Carrillo-Tapia stated.

"LULAC is calling for a meeting with the US Army leadership at the Pentagon and for full accountability from the top-down. LULAC will not rest until there is justice. We will not have any other Vanessa Guillens, any other Ana Fernandas, any where else in our military, " Carrillo-Tapia added. 

Cruz once again took the podium to list LULAC's two requests: The death investigation be conducted outside of the structure of the Army and that all evidence be presented to the FBI for their assessment. 

Cruz then went on to announce his disapproval of the Army's claim that no foul play was evident in Basaldua Ruiz's death.

"For the Army to say no foul play presumes facts that have not yet been brought forth. For the Army to say no foul play would also indicate a tone deafness to the concerns of the father and the mother of Ana Fernanda Basaldua Ruiz," Cruz exclaimed. 

The press conference concluded with Cruz stating how LULAC believes safety within military is the most important factor for current and aspiring military members.

In a statement issued the night before the news conference, LULAC also demanded the FBI investigate Basaldua Ruiz's death.

The Army's Department of Criminal Investigation Division did acknowledge allegations of sexual harassment toward Basaldua Ruiz and said it will be part of the investigation into her death. 

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