Dear Barbados Free Press,
Or should I say “Dear Lord, OH LORD!”
Is there something I’m missing about living on this rock? Have you ever seen and heard of so much violence?
Neipaul Trotman (above) is shot and murdered at Fitts Beach in broad daylight at 11am while playing with his infant son. A dozen tourists witness his execution. Then a day or two later Cyprian Payne was sleeping when somebody firebombed the home. The man comes out to fight the fire and is shot numerous times, and is hanging onto his life by a thread at the hospital.
We built a pedestrian overpass at The Pine so that folks could safely cross the ABC highway and now thugs are throwing concrete building blocks onto the vehicles below. There have been several serious incidents and injured motorists.
A week ago Dwayne Johnson was traveling in a ZR van when he had words with another man. Only words. That man shot him in the back right in the ZR van!
Am I going crazy, or is this island going crazy? It never used to be like this.
No arrests reported
Brian Mulligan has been worth only a paragraph or two if that in the local news media since his stabbing death early Sunday morning at the tourist-popular St. Lawrence Gap, Christ Church. Today the British papers are full of his photos in Barbados and holding his new-born. (London Evening Standard: London father-of-two stabbed to death in Barbados…)
At this point, who knows what happened? Mr. Mulligan was mostly deaf after having both ears ruptured by a grenade in Iraq. He had been here for a few weeks working for Lime Telecom.
One thing we do know though: this island does not feel the way it felt even five years ago, and ignoring the problem is no solution.
Today the world’s newspapers are full of Brian Mulligan’s death in Barbados, but once again a foreign national has died at a Bajan tourist area and we see nothing in our own news media. No words from the PM or the Tourism Minister. No press conference by the police to communicate that Barbados is horrified and doing everything it can to find the culprits.
Nope. None of that… while the world’s news media goes big on the story. Just like what happened when Canadian tourist Terry Schwarzfeld was murdered.
How long until our leaders recognize that you can’t hide stuff like this anymore?
The last anyone saw of this case in the Bajan news outlets was when Lawyer Philip Vernon Nicholls was freed on bail for Money Laundering and Theft of $675,000 from a client. Nicholls was due back in court on February 25, 2014, but the news media didn’t cover that appearance. Can anyone advise what happened?
Or… is this yet another case of charges being dropped for no reason?
Here’s BFP’s original November 2, 2013 article when he was released on bail…
Originally posted on Barbados Free Press:
Prominent Barbados attorney-at-law Philip Vernon Nicholls is free on $200,000 bail and will return to court on February 25, 2014 to face charges of money laundering and theft of $674,172.
The offenses are said to involve a foreign real estate client – a method of stealing money that seems all too prevalent amongst Bajan lawyers. (Check out some of BFP’s past stories on this topic: here, here, here, here, here, here and here – get the picture?)
In the past many Bajan lawyers bought their way out of similar theft charges. Until recently most of these complaints were dealt with internally by the Barbados Bar Association until the volume of thieving lawyers walking free so undermined the reputation of Bajan lawyers that the association and the police were forced to really do something. Still though, most lawyers end up buying their way out in a…
View original 105 more words
On Saturday night, Opposition Leader Mia Mottley told a Brooklyn, New York town hall meeting that although there have been publicised isolated incidents, crime is not running rampant in Barbados.
Folks in Grape Hall might have a different opinion because you can’t leave a shirt hanging out to dry without keeping an eye out for it, and it’s not wise to walk in the evening unless you are in a group or sure of yourself. Five years ago things were different. Tell me if I’m wrong! While a few Brit tourists have said very public goodbyes to Bim, most don’t write letters when they make that decision.
Looking at some of the headlines from the 24 hours after Mia’s message, and knowing how things are – you have to ask yourself if Mia and some of her fellow political class really believe what they say publicly. Or, do they think they can ‘solve’ the crime problem by denial?
Nation News: Mottley: No rampant crime.
Telegraph UK: Briton fatally stabbed in Barbados
Nation News: Guns Ablaze
Somebody should be sacked
by Passin Thru
On March 12, 2014, four gunmen burst into a rented beach apartment at Bath and shot Canadian tourist Johnathan Huddle in front of his wife and 11 month old daughter. Fortunately Mr. Huddle survived – according to various reports because he and his wife are both trained soldiers with tours in Afghanistan.
On the good side, our Royal Barbados Police Force arrested three adults and one 15 year old less than two weeks later. Excellent work – assuming that they have the right thugs. (That is always a realistic concern in Barbados when a tourist is harmed. The police sometimes beat confessions from the ‘usual suspects’ by default.)
As bad as the story is though, the Canadian press is still playing up the fact that Mrs. Huddle kept her husband alive for AN HOUR that it took the ambulance to arrive.
That’s right: an hour for an ambulance to arrive when they knew that a tourist had been shot.
Concerning the hour for an ambulance to arrive, there are two messages that Barbados can deliver to Canada and our other tourism markets:
1/ This is acceptable and standard in Barbados, and tourists should know that if they get hurt it may take an hour or more for an ambulance to reach them.
2/ An hour is unacceptable, and the persons responsible have been sacked.
If Barbados doesn’t sack someone over this, then any assurances and apologies are pure cow turd.
Prime Minister Stuart… watcha gonna do?
“One officer slightly shot” sounds a bit strange, but it’s just about what the police and papers are saying happened on Tuesday night. The story only deserves four sentences in the Nation and Barbados Today because that is all the information released by the police.
Think about that folks: Gunmen saw patrolling police officers, then started shooting in an ambush. If that doesn’t sound like Kingston, Jamaica I don’t know what does.
But the police and the news media are playing down the incident, I suppose because the injured officer was only ‘slightly’ shot.
Strange times ’bout this place. Sometimes I swear somebody stole my country and put this new one under my feet. It looks like the same old place, but it isn’t.
A police detective was “slightly injured” when gunmen opened fire on a group of officers last night.
Police public relations officer Inspector David Welch says members of the Criminal Investigations Department were on patrol in Chapman Lane, the City around 11 pm when unknown assailants shot at them several times before running away.
He said police returned fire.
The incident is being investigated.
… from Barbados Today Men Shoot at Police
A train called CIVIL UNREST
“Dear Barbados Free Press,
You should have been at the BLP meeting at St. George Secondary School. The Nation is soft selling the talk about marching in the streets. More nuff than talk is happening when former cabinet ministers telling people to organise marches.”
Received from an anonymous reader
‘Unrest’ word spoken again
Crime is already rising in proportion to the closed businesses and potholed roads. The Royal Barbados Police Force and the Defense forces recently increased crowd control training and joint practices.
The government hears it coming. Law enforcement and defense hear it coming. Private security patrol companies hear it coming.
Now you listen… Hear that train in the distance? It’s not so faint anymore, you can really hear it now. It’s coming…
Marching ‘may be only way’
Some prominent members of the Barbados Labour Party have come out in support of civil protest against the Government, despite recommendations to the contrary from the trade union movement.
During one of the party’s The People’s Assembly meetings at St George Secondary School last night, various speakers said taking to the streets in protest might be the only way for Barbadians to get their message across to the Freundel Stuart administration.
One such speaker was former Cabinet minister Anthony Wood, who said the imposition of university fees and the planned layoff of thousands of public servants were reason enough. Continue reading