An Army drill sergeant has died after being found in her car with ‘multiple gunshot wounds’

When officers arrived, they found a white Dodge Challenger with "multiple gunshots to the driver's side door and window."

An Army drill sergeant was pronounced dead on Jan. 1 after she was found in her car by law enforcement, having been shot “multiple times.”

Staff Sgt. Jessica Mitchell, a dental specialist at the U.S. Army Medical Center of Excellence on Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, was pronounced dead at 3 a.m. on Jan. 1, according to a JBSA press release. Her unit was notified by the hospital that she “was the victim of multiple gunshot wounds.”

Mitchell previously worked at a JBSA dental clinic since Oct. 2017. She was on holiday leave at the time.

According to the San Antonio Police Department, officers were dispatched just after 2 a.m. on Jan. 1 for “a stranded vehicle in the fast lane” near Interstate 10. When they arrived, they found a white Dodge Challenger with “multiple gunshots to the driver’s side door and window.”

Officers “opened the vehicle door and checked for a pulse” of the victim who “appeared to have been struck multiple times but were unable to locate one.”

“The victim was transported by EMS to University Hospital where she was pronounced deceased by hospital staff,” the statement says.

Maj. Gen. Dennis LeMaster, the MEDCoE commander, said in the JBSA press release that they are “devastated by the tragic loss of Drill Sergeant Jessica Mitchell.

“Our sincere condolences go out to her family and friends,” LeMaster said. “We are focused on supporting Drill Sergeant Mitchell’s family as well as her soldiers during this extremely difficult time.”

Deborah Mitchell, Jessica’s mother, told San Antonio Fox-affiliate station KABB that she had spoken with her daughter on Monday.

“She was telling us her dreams,” Deborah said.

Jessica’s father, Mayo, told KABB that he told all of his children, “I want you to do better than what I have done.”

“She and my children have so far and she wanted to be the best that she can be in her military career,” Mayo told KABB. “But that was cut short.”

The Army Criminal Investigation Command and San Antonio Police Department are investigating the situation. Homicide investigators “are working diligently to determine motive and identify the perpetrator(s),” according to SAPD.

Featured photo: Army Staff Sgt. Jessica Mitchell. (Photo via U.S. Army)

Haley Britzky
Haley Britzky

is the Army reporter for Task & Purpose, covering the daily happenings in the Army and how they impact soldiers and their families, as well as broader national security issues. Originally from Texas, Haley previously worked at Axios before joining Task & Purpose in January 2019. Contact the author here.

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