Breaking News
More () »

Maya's brother, sister end week 1 of Larry Millete's preliminary hearing

Cross-examination continued of Maya's sister in the morning and one of her brothers took the stand just before noon.

SAN DIEGO — Friday's hearing ended just after 4:30 p.m. with a planned return on Tuesday, January 17 at 9 a.m. The court will not be in session on Monday, Jan. 16 in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Three people took the stand on Friday with the majority of the time spent with Maya's siblings.

The sister of missing mother Maya Millete was back on the witness stand Friday morning, for more cross-examination by the defense. 

Thursday, Maricris Drouaillet spent several hours testifying during Larry Millete's preliminary hearing.

Friday, Millete's defense attorney, Bonita Martinez, appeared to be trying to paint a picture of Maya as someone who was into partying, drinking and staying out late. 

"In fact, Mr. Millete became upset when your sister and your family would be drinking and he would get really upset after Ms. Milliete became moody and [hungover], do you remember that?" asked Martinez.

"I don't know if he gets mad because I hardly see my sister being drunk," responded Drouaillet.

RELATED: Day 1 coverage of the preliminary hearing for Larry Millete

She went on to tell the judge, my sister does not get as drunk as the defense is trying to portray. 

Martinez also questioned Drouaillet about the day she went looking for Maya at the Millete home after finding out about her disappearance.

Credit: CBS 8
Maricris Drouaillet, Maya Millete's sibling take stand during Day 3 of Larry Millete's preliminary hearing

Drouaillet testified she called the police and indicated to an officer she was suspicious of Larry.

RELATED: Day 2 coverage of the preliminary hearing for Larry Millete

"The same conversation with the officer, the Chula Vista Police Officer, you also mentioned at that time that your sister May had an affair approximately six months ago, which was the origin of all of her troubles with Larry, do you recall that?" asked Martinez.

"No I don't," responded Drouaillet.  

"Did you believe your sister was having an affair at that time?" asked Martinez.

"No I don't," responded Drouaillet.  

In the summer of 2020, May "Maya" Millete told her younger brother, Jay-R Tabalanza, in a series of text messages that Larry Millete was regularly monitoring her emails, messages, social media, and financial activity. She said Larry was "toxic and mentally abusive" and had started becoming "concerned" about her interactions with other men.

"I've stopped being friends with any guys," she texted her brother, who testified that Larry suspected his wife was having an affair and had expressed a desire to "get the other guy."

Tabalanza testified Friday as part of a multiweek court proceeding in which a judge will decide if there is enough evidence for Larry Millete to stand trial for murder.

Tabalanza testified that starting in 2020, Larry began calling him on an almost daily basis for help regarding his deteriorating marriage.

In the calls, Larry stated that he feared May was going to leave him and wanted Tabalanza "to see what I could do with Maya ... basically try to convince her to not leave him."

WATCH: Day 3 | Maya Millete's siblings take the stand  

In the middle of 2020, May briefly moved out of the Chula Vista home and in with Tabalanza and his wife. Tabalanza testified that May said she wanted to separate from her husband and "co-parent" their three children. He testified that Larry continued calling him during this time and frequently asked him where May was and what she was doing.

In text messages revealed in court, May told her brother that Larry was "manipulating" family members and had been trying to control her.

"I'm so tired of his mental and emotional abuse," she texted Tabalanza. Later she wrote, "He's got you all in his pockets and I'm alone and isolated ...exactly where he wants me to be."

She also wrote that Larry used their children "to make sure he keeps me in my place!"

The day after May went missing, Tabalanza said he traveled to his sister's home to see if she was there.

One of May's daughters answered the door. When asked where her mother was, she told him, "She's been locked in her room for 11 hours now and she hasn't fed us," Tabalanza testified.

Tabalanza said he went to the master bedroom that May was supposedly in and knocked on the door and called her name multiple times. He received no response and no indication that anyone was inside, he testified.

Larry was at the home and told Tabalanza that he and May had an argument the previous night. He also said he had just arrived home from work, but later said he had been out with his young son much of the day.

While speaking with Larry downstairs, Tabalanza said he noticed May's then-9-year-old daughter kick the master bedroom door multiple times. The door remained closed and there was no response.

About one week earlier, May revealed to several family members, including one of her sisters, Maricris Drouaillet, that she was planning to divorce Larry soon.

Prosecutors have alleged that Millete's efforts to keep his wife in the marriage included employing the services of spell casters, through whom he hoped magic could be used to convince his wife to stay. Later, he allegedly asked the spell casters to render her incapacitated so she could not leave the home.

His messages to spell casters abruptly halted after Jan. 8, save for one message on Jan. 9 that requested that hexes on his wife be removed, according to court papers filed by the prosecution.


Since January 2021, the disappearance of Chula Vista mother Maya Millete has been under investigation by authorities and the subject of local and national news. The Chula Vista Police Department and multiple federal agencies, including the FBI, have looked into her disappearance for more than 2 years. 

The last time Maya was heard from was on Jan. 7, 2021. Her husband Larry Milete was arrested on October 19, 2021 and charged with murder.

This preliminary hearing is not a trial. There are no jurors. Evidence will be presented, and witnesses will testify over two to three weeks in the Downtown San Diego courthouse. In the end, Judge Dwayne Moring – a former public defender and a former San Diego prosecutor – will decide if there is enough evidence for Millete to go to trial for murder.

TIMELINE: The disappearance of Maya Millete | 2-year timeline

WATCH: Maya Millete's siblings take stand during Day 3 of Larry Millete's preliminary hearing

Before You Leave, Check This Out