SAN DIEGO — Day two of the preliminary hearing for Larry Millete left off with the missing Chula Vista mother’s sister on the witness stand.
“It’s going to be a messy divorce,” Maricris Drouaillet said Thursday, recalling what her sister Maya or “May” said to her on January 3, 2021. “If something happens to me, it’s going to be Larry.” She said that was the last day she saw her in person.
Larry Millete appeared before a judge wearing a mask and headphones, which Judge Dwayne Moring said is a hearing-impaired device.
The second day of the hearing began with the continuation of David Garber at the witness stand. Garber is a forensic specialist with the Chula Vista Police Department.
A picture of a computer’s search history, found in their daughter Lara’s room, which showed “how to mentally torture someone,” “psychological torture,” “how to mentally torture someone with memories,” “how to mentally torture someone with words,” and “how to torture someone without harming them physically, emotionally, and spiritually.” It was not made clear if it’s been discovered who searched that. There is a timestamp of 7:23 – 7:27 p.m., but no date.
Garber testified that he took two mouth swabs from Larry Millete on January 23, 2021 during the search warrant. He said he photographed evidence in another search warrant on July 1, 2021, but the details of that were not talked about.
Garber testified that he did not find any blood in the garage of the home, an area that was brought up in question during the time of Maya’s disappearance.
During Drouaillet’s testimony, she shared more about their family history.
Maricris and May come from a family of six siblings, who grew up in the Philippines and moved to Hawaii.
“She’s always been the smart one,” Drouaillet said in regards to her sister. She said May was on the honor roll, in honor society, enjoyed writing and reading and kept a diary.
May was 17 when she met Larry in high school. May and Larry were married when May was 18 years old in Hawaii. After they got married, Larry enlisted in the Navy, and May stayed behind in Hawaii for a short period of time. Shortly after, May moved to the East Coast to be with Larry. Then, they moved to San Diego in military housing. After, they moved to Murrieta, where Maricris moved in with them after leaving Hawaii from October 2005 to March 2006. Then, May and Larry moved to Eastlake, before moving into their home in Chula Vista. May graduated from college at UC San Diego.
At 13, Lara May is their oldest child. Melani is 11 years old and Lazarus Tristan is six years old.
Maricris said Larry would call her and ask for marriage/separation advice beginning in the middle of 2020, because Maricris had been through a separation, but not a divorce, with a previous partner. She said that she thought her sister and brother-in-law would be able to work it out.
Maricris said at the end of June 2020, the family was on a trip to Lake Havasu and noticed Larry and May were fighting and would go off in a car to have a fight for an hour or two, and then go back to the camp where the rest of the family was.
Maricris said they spent Thanksgiving 2020 camping in Glamis with a majority of the siblings, less than two months before May vanished. She said on Christmas in 2020, it was “very obvious” Larry and Maya were fighting and May was not interacting much with the family. She said she could tell Larry was mad.
Maricris said she can recall one time “years ago” when Larry became violent. She said Larry was dropping her, May, her husband, her son and and a few other family members at Mountain High Ski resort when a parking attendant, directing traffic, did not let Larry go to a drop-off zone near the resort, so Maricris said Larry hit the attendant with the car. She said at the time, Larry said he snapped and that “he couldn’t really remember … why he did that.”
The evidence showed a text message between Jane, Maricris and Maya on January 4, 2021, at 2:24 p.m. May texted, “I need to borrow 10k for divorce attorney… Can I pawn you guys my Rolexes? Also can you some of my LVs… the ones he won’t notice as missing or not being declared.”
Their sister Jane texted back, “Give them to papa. I’ll ask teodie [Jane’s spouse] if we have enough. When do you need it.”
Maricris offered “…lets do 5k & 5k,” offering to split the divorce attorney fees for Maya.
Maya responded, “Consulted 2 lawyers today” and then sent a text right after, “Will pick one this week so can be filed by next week after Lara’s bday this weekend.”
Maricris said on January 9, after she hadn’t heard from her sister, she and her husband drove to Chula Vista to the Millete home to try and find her. She said Larry was home with their three kids, but told Maricris to not call the police yet, because she went on a hike earlier and she should be home soon.
She called the Chula Vista Police Department, who advised her to call local hospitals, morgues and safe houses to try and locate Maya. Maricris said she and her husband Richard called, but Larry was upstairs with his kids and did not call anyone to try to find Maya. Maricris called the Chula Vista Police Department and officers responded to their home.
Maricris testified that she and her husband spent the night at the Millete house on a couch in the living room on January 9. But, on January 23 when police served a search warrant, Maricris pointed out that the couch she had slept on wasn’t there anymore.
She said the next day, January 10, was Lara’s birthday. She said they spent part of the day going door-to-door in the neighborhood to try and footage of Maya, but Larry did not go with them to search. Later, Maricris said Larry told her he would take care of the kids, and she will be in charge of looking for Maya.
According to Maricris, Larry got into Maya’s Facebook account and was upset at the messages that were sent because they were discussing that Larry could have been the one to do something to Maya.