Dozens of people showed up at San Miguel Park in Chula Vista on Friday to pray for the safe return of Chula Vista mother May “Maya” Millete, who has been missing for nearly 10 months.
Millete, 39, disappeared without a trace in early January and hasn’t been heard from or seen since. Prosecutors say her husband, 40-year-old Larry Millete, is responsible for her murder and ended her life after she sought a divorce.
Attendees held candles, signs and each other as speakers led them in prayer and song. They mourned, but also celebrated Maya's life. And they prayed for justice and for her safe return.
Some wore shirts with Maya's face on them and many wore purple ribbons in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
A banner strung along a fence urged drovers to "Honk to help find Maya," and included an email address, email@example.com, where tips can be sent. Other signs posted at the vigil detailed how volunteers could join search efforts.
Maya Millete's sister, Maricris Drouaille, said she and her family have been searching for Maya for nine months and won't stop soon. Drouaille is also helping Larry Millete can help.
"I'm hoping he'll have a change of heart, that he'll change and he'll let us know where Maya, where my sister is for the sake of his children -- Their children need to know where their mommy is. They need to know what really happened to their mom, that she just didn't abandon them -- Just for the sake of the children," she said.
He was arrested Tuesday at his home and pleaded not guilty to murder and illegal possession of an assault rifle on Thursday. Larry was detained following a months-long investigation from law enforcement entities and dozens of search efforts by Maya’s family and volunteers.
More on the tragic disappearance.
“These efforts ultimately generated a variety of pieces of evidence that have become clear and overwhelming," Chula Vista Police Department Chief Roxana Kennedy said in a press conference on Tuesday. "Larry Millete, May’s husband, is responsible for May’s murder and disappearance.”
The warrant issued for Larry’s arrest also stated that there were no signs of life from Maya, attributing to her lack of cell phone use and financial transactions.
With Maya’s body still missing, her family remains hopeful they will find their loved one. Following the announcement of the arrest, Maricris Drouaillet, Maya’s sister, asked the public to continue helping them in their search efforts.
“It’s hard to go against family," Drouaillet said. "He’s been with us for 20 years. My sister loved him. She gave him three kids. This is still not the end. We have a long way to go. We’re still asking the public: Please help us bring my sister home. I just want to see my sister.”