Folks, when the authorities do not brief the public, and the Barbados news media doesn’t print information or ask the right questions, people start rumours or hear rumours and wonder about them.
People wonder about the rumours because they know that justice on the island has a whole lot to do with who you are and who you know. Rule of Law equally enforced is not the way things are done ’bout hey.
We read in the papers a little while ago about cyclist Don Stoute being hit and killed and a woman being arrested after driving away from the accident scene. We’ve heard nothing since.
Why is that?
One of our readers has heard some rumours about the incident (as many of us have) and he posted the following as a comment. Remember that this is only rumour so far. Discuss please…
Rule of Law
I pose this submission under the issue of Rule of Law.
Nearly two weeks ago, a cyclist was reportedly knocked off his bike and killed by a hit and run motorist. It reported in the media, then it all went cold.
1. Is it true that the first destination the motorist headed for was to a mechanic who was a family friend to “fix my windscreen quickly, I ran into a cow.”
2. Is it true that as the mechanic started work on the vehicle, he spotted blood on the screen and other areas of the car?
3. Is it true that he put conscience and duty over deceit and friendship and rang the police, the reason the police was so easily able the apprehend the culprit?
4. Is it true that the culprit is the wife of a police sargeant?
5. Does that relationship has any bearing on the fact that no charges have yet been brought to bear?
6 Is she currently under arrest?
7. Is the case dead and buried?
8. Why no further media reporting?
Here is the story that appeared in The Nation back on December 9, 2009. You should visit the paper online and read the story there because the paper deserves your visit: Cyclist dies in crash
HOWEVER, just in case “something” like an internet error causes the story to be taken down from the web like so many other stories, we’ll reprint it here…
But please try to read it at The Nation first, ok?
Also… reporter Barry Alleyne can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any information or questions for him.
Cyclist Dies In Crash
Tears flowed and emotions ran high early yesterday morning when popular cyclist Edmund “Don” Stoute of Holders Hill, St James, died on the spot after a vehicular accident outside Groves Plantation, near Six Roads, St Philip.
A 29-year-old St Philip woman was last night assisting police with investigations into the crash.
Police public relations officer Station Sergeant David Welch stated that police investigations and information received from the public allowed them “to develop a person of interest”, and the woman was subsequently taken in for questioning.
Stoute, 50, an avid rider in the Barbados Cycling Union’s Masters category, was out riding around 5:30 a.m. with teammate Jason Forde, when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver. Stoute’s bike was destroyed, and his body thrown more than 20 yards, ending up in the middle of the road, according to witnesses.
Police at the District “C” Station in St Philip told the DAILY NATION that the driver of the vehicle stopped ahead of the riders after the collision, then drove off.
“All we know from the other cyclist [Forde] is that the vehicle was white in colour. The rider was not able to give us a full description of the vehicle involved,” police said. According to the Road Traffic Act, it is an offence to be involved in a vehicular accident and leave the scene without speaking to police.
A large crowd gathered at the scene after news spread of the early morning accident.
Forde, one of Barbados’ most renowned cyclists, broke down in tears. He was consoled by police officers who arrived to conduct investigations. Minutes afterwards, family members and a number of Stoute’s cycling buddies arrived to give emotional support.
Stoute’s sons Christopher and Charles were sombre after looking at their dad’s riding helmet and cycling shoes strewn across the road, and his broken bike at the roadside near a bushy area. His niece Nicole Peters also broke down.
President of the Barbados Cycling Union, Keith Yearwood, who visited the scene, said: “The sport of cycling has lost a true stalwart. Don had been in cycling for many years and made a serious contribution to the sport. This is still an early age to lose someone who had so much to offer. His loss is a significant one.”
Just last Saturday, cyclist Percival Niles, 40, died on the spot after being involved in an accident on the ABC Highway along Lowlands, Christ Church, during an early morning ride.
“Coming on the heels of the last accident, I’m actually at a loss for words. I still don’t believe the motorists of Barbados are paying due attention on the road,” Yearwood concluded. Stoute’s death was the 22nd road fatality for 2009, and the second in 24 hours.
On Tuesday, motorcyclist Ronnie Welch, 33, of Rockley New Road, Christ Church, succumbed at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) to injuries sustained in an accident last Sunday on the Ronald Mapp Highway. Welch had a female pillion rider who remains a patient at the QEH, stable, but suffering serious injuries.