The family of a paratrooper whose dismembered body was found washed up on a beach have spoken of their grief after details of the killing emerged.
Tragic Enrique Roman-Martinez, 21, went missing from a campsite in May, where he was staying with friends.
Parts of his body, including his head, later washed up on shore in Shackleford Banks, North Carolina in the US.
New details from an autopsy report reveal he had been decapitated and his eyes were missing.
His death was ruled to be “homicide by undetermined means".
His sister, Griselda Martinez, told the Fayetteville Observer: “It was so cruel what they did to him."
And she continued: "Why did they have to go the extra step to do this to him?
"So, it was really hard for us, too.”
The sickening autopsy report states: “While decapitation is, in and of itself, universally fatal, the remainder of the body in this case was not available for examination, and therefore potential causes of death involving the torso and extremities cannot be excluded.”
Mr Roman-Martinez, from California and stationed at Fort Bragg, was with friends who said they called 911 when they saw him walk away in the middle of the night wearing only shorts.
The caller reportedly said: “We might be afraid that he might’ve hurt himself but we’re really not sure.”
However none of the group mentioned their missing friend when they were told to move on by rangers the following day, it is claimed.
Mr Roman-Martinez's sister has questioned this version of events, telling ABC News: “Because my brother can’t see without his glasses, so for him to walk out in the middle of the night without his glasses, it’s not likely.
"He can’t see, where would he go?”
The autopsy report said the soldier had a broken jaw, cuts, and a fractured spine.
The report said: “Despite multiple conversations with investigating officers, no explanation for the death of this individual or the findings at autopsy has been offered.
“It is therefore my opinion that while a definitive cause of death cannot be determined, the findings, in this case, are most consistent with death due to homicide.”
Major General Christopher Donahue paid tribute to the young officer, saying in a statement: “Spc. Enrique Roman-Martinez was a soldier and valued member of our team. Our condolences remain with his family, friends, and fellow Paratroopers.
“Over Memorial Day weekend we lost Enrique to a senseless act of violence. We are doing everything we can to support his family and find justice for Enrique.
“I’ve personally spoken with his family to assure them that we will not stop in our pursuit to bring those responsible to justice."
The US Army has offered a $25,000 reward for information that leads to the killers being convicted.