Family members of Sgt. Elder Fernandes, a Fort Hood soldier who grew up in Brockton, Massachusetts are calling for a congressional investigation after he went missing a week ago.
Police in Killeen, Texas, who are involved in the search, said Fernandes, 23, was reported missing on Aug. 17. Family members told police he was last seen or heard from Monday afternoon when his staff sergeant dropped him off at his home in Killeen. Army officials asked for the public’s help Friday in their search for Fernandes.
Fernandes’s mother and other family members traveled from Massachusetts to Texas to help look for him. They were scheduled to meet with officials at Fort Hood on Sunday. Army officials have said they do not suspect foul play, but the family is not convinced after hearing Fernandes had previously reported sexual abuse at Fort Hood. Army officials said his disappearance is not connected to that case.
"There's something that's not clicking right," Fernandes' uncle, John Sequira, told NBC10 Boston. "The family needs answers. We need Elder back."
Fernandes' disappearance comes after the deaths of three Fort Hood soldiers throughout the month of July. Fernandes was recently transferred to a different unit because he was the victim of "abusive sexual contact," according to U.S. Army officials.
The U.S. Army asked for help from public in the search last week.
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Sgt. Elder Fernandes, a 23-year-old Fort Hood soldier and Brockton native, has been missing for a week.
State Rep. Liz Miranda, D-Suffolk, is also helping the family with their fight.
"The family does not believe the Army is being as truthful and open and honest as they can be," Miranda said.
Miranda is encouraging everyone to post Fernandes' photo on social media. She hopes having his story go viral will lead to answers.
"We're hoping and pleading with the entire country. Help us bring him home back here to Massachusetts," she said.