CHULA VISTA, Calif. — Chula Vista police and family members are hoping information from the public will help investigators find Maya Millete’s body after her husband was arrested on suspicion of murder.
“This is not the end,” Maya’s sister Maricris Drouaillet told FOX 5 Wednesday. “It’s still another phase that we have to go through. … We haven’t found her yet, so that is still really, really heavy in our hearts.”
Larry Millete, 40, was booked into jail Tuesday on two felony counts, including a murder charge and possession of an assault weapon, District Attorney Summer Stephan said. She confirmed Maya’s body has not yet been found.
Chula Vista Chief of Police Roxana Kennedy and the district attorney are urging anyone who saw a black Lexus GX 460 with custom California tag “Maylani” on Jan. 8 to call them. Chula Vista police say video showed Larry moving it to a position where a video camera could not capture whether a body was in the back.
Authorities are also working to recover a .40-caliber gun they say belonged to Larry.
“We want to see justice served and we want to have May come home to her family,” Kennedy said. “As far as finding her body, I am hopeful. Can I guarantee that we’re going to find it? No. This is a difficult case. It’s extremely challenging.”
Kennedy joined FOX 5 Wednesday morning to talk about the grueling 9-month investigation that led to Larry Millete’s arrest, and what’s next in the case.
“We’re just in the very beginning of a step toward justice right now, so we still have a lot of work to do,” she said. “It’s kind of bittersweet in a way, because it’s been nine months of very intense, behind-the-scenes work. When I saw Maricris yesterday break down, it was extremely emotional.”
Kennedy said Tuesday’s news conference detailing some of the “overwhelming evidence” against Larry in the Jan. 7 disappearance of his wife was the culmination of a very difficult time for Maya’s loved ones, and her department.
“I give so much credit to our detectives, our crimes of violence team. This impacted our entire department,” she said. “Our dispatchers who took the call, the officers who responded to the scene, there was so much that went into this in-depth analysis. … We become deeply involved with these cases.”
The police chief said she understands the community’s frustration when it comes to how long it took for an arrest, and that more details were withheld for trial.
“There’s a part of the whole process that has to stay quiet and let it play out in the court system,” she said. “We didn’t compromise the investigation at all. We took the higher road even when it was harder to take the higher road when we were receiving criticism, but this is what cops do. This is what we do behind the scenes.”
The case has brought on renewed calls to address domestic violence, which is the police department’s number two call for service, according to Kennedy. She encouraged anyone who is suffering from domestic violence or suspects someone they know is to get help.
“And I think about the children as well, it’s just been very, very, very difficult,” Kennedy said. “It’s really important that we break the silence and end the violence.”
Maricris’ husband, Richard, told FOX 5 the couple will “hopefully see the kids soon.”
“(It) makes it a little easier on us now that Larry’s out of the way,” he said. “We just want to see the kids.”
FOX 5’s Ashley Jacobs contributed to this report.