Filipino American May “Maya” Millete has been missing from her Chula Vista, California home since January 2021. Maya was 39-years-old when she vanished only two days before a planned family trip to Big Bear Lake for her eldest daughter’s 11th birthday celebration. When her family and friends tried to contact her, her cell phone went straight to voicemail.
On the 7th of January, 2021, Maya disappeared and hasn’t been heard from since. On the day she went missing, she had phoned her divorce attorney and was last seen by her family at 5 p.m.
Larry Millete, her husband, was caught on his neighbor’s security footage backing his black Lexus into the family garage, obscuring the view of the rear of the vehicle. Later that day, he took his son to the beach for an outing, driving that same Lexus. Two days later, Maya’s sister, Maricris, became concerned when she hadn’t heard anything, which was very out of character for Maya. Maricris immediately called the police to file a missing persons report.
Maya Millete worked as a civilian employee of the United States Navy and met her husband, Larry, when she was very young. The two got married and had three beautiful children together. The couple moved to the San Diego area and lived as a happy family for almost 21 years until their marriage started breaking down. It finally deteriorated to the point where Maya wanted a divorce and secured a lawyer to begin the separation.
Marital issues had been going on for about a year. It is alleged that 40-year-old Larry had murdered his 39-year-old wife after he became aware that she wanted a divorce. Officers responded to the Millete home on the 10th of January to investigate. By this time, Maya hadn’t been heard from in three days.
An extensive search was done at the Millete home for any evidence of foul play. It is unclear what, if anything, was found. Volunteers and search parties have combed local wildlife areas such as the Glamis Dunes, Saltin Sea, Fish Creek, and Lower Otay Lake, among many other locations, hoping to uncover any clues as to the missing woman’s whereabouts.
The searches unfortunately have proven to be fruitless.
Undoubtedly, the most terrifying aspect of Maya’s disappearance comes from a home security system. On the 7th of January, around 8:30 p.m., eight loud banging sounds can be heard on her neighbor’s exterior camera audio recording.
Many people believe the sounds they are hearing are eight gunshots within the Millete home. Children can also be heard in the audio clip 30 minutes later, seemingly shouting outside and some speculate that they may be distraught from hearing, or witnessing, their mother being shot.
The noises on the security footage are still being analyzed by investigators. No one reported hearing gunshots in the neighborhood that evening.
Private investigator, Billy Little, has been hired by the family to look into Maya’s disappearance. He claims that at 10:30 p.m. on the evening the banging sounds were recorded, the three Millete children were outside in the dark and the cold playing in the backyard. He believes Larry instructed them to do so. Little also says there is video evidence proving the children were outside at that time.
The last time her family saw Maya alive was on a camping trip to Glamis Dunes Imperial Valley. Maricris and her husband claim the Millete’s were having marital issues and they were aware that the relationship had been off and on for some time. They say during the camping trip, the couple was arguing a lot and it made them feel very uncomfortable.
To add to the mystery, Maya had told her family in January, “If anything happened to me, it would be Larry.” It wasn’t long after this statement was made that the devoted mother suddenly vanished.
Information later came out that Larry suspected his wife of having an affair and allegedly planning to hire someone to kill her lover. An unnamed witness overheard Mr. Millete discussing the murder-for-hire plot prior to January 2021. Allegedly he planned to pay a hitman $20,000 to kill the man he suspected was having a relationship with his wife. A relative of Maya’s also heard Larry threatening to harm the same man.
The Chula Vista Police are investigating the supposed murder-for-hire angle and its connection with this case. Maya’s alleged boyfriend has not yet been named or confirmed.
In February of 2021, Larry abruptly ceased his cooperation with investigators and hired an attorney. He refused to let Maya’s family have contact with their three children.
Maya’s sister, Maricris, has tried to gain custody of her nieces and nephew, but so far her attempts have been unsuccessful. The children are under the care of Larry’s parents so they can attend their current school. Maricris and her family are only allowed visitation.
Larry has been known for sending suspicious texts to Maya’s family, including a haunting picture of an altar to Maya which disturbingly displays a picture of the couple covered in blood and candles.
He had no response when questioned about the altar.
Finally, in July of 2021, police named Larry as a person of interest in his wife’s disappearance. He was arrested three months later in October and charged with her murder, despite the fact that her body has not yet been found. He pleaded not guilty and remains in custody at this time.
Since being in custody, he has made upwards of one hundred phone calls to his children from inside the jail. Superior Court Judge D’Addezio ruled that he is now only allowed to call his attorney.
Larry faces additional charges for illegal possession of an assault rifle. In May of 2021, police filed a gun violence restraining order, citing a danger to the public as he owned “illegal assault weapons and unregistered firearms.” Weapons were removed from the home at that time.
Maya’s family members have been relentlessly searching for her since the day she was reported missing; conducting numerous searches and vigils, desperately hoping for any leads to her whereabouts. In the long and heartbreaking months since she vanished, her husband has not attended any of the searches or vigils for his missing wife.
If you have any information on the whereabouts of May “Maya” Millete, please call investigators at (619) 691–5139 or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580–8477.