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Letter from Carnival Victory Captain confirming shooting death of passenger


paulandfran

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Nope. Don't feel like eating any cookies today.

 

You sure? They're peanut butter. You're not allergic to peanut butter, are you?

 

Sad day for Carnival and St. Thomas and mostly feel sad for the girl's family. :(

 

Indeed, and all levity aside, this very tragic.

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You sure? They're peanut butter. You're not allergic to peanut butter, are you?

 

Hmmm.... sounds tasty... maybe I will. But I'll have to check my 'how to be a vegan' cookbook to be sure it's allowed. I'll get back to you on that.

 

Indeed, and all levity aside, this very tragic.

 

Agreed, horrific and tragic.

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Such sad news. Crime is up even here...new jail having trouble in staffing and funding...economy is a part of it.

 

To have this happen on public tourist used transport...on vacation...beyond tragic..prayers and hope toward future improvements with lessons learned.

 

I hope St. Thomas gets support for anything positve they do toward change..change only really takes hold and happens being "for something"...and I have been there only once on second full week cruise in my life (shopped and snorkled)..was and am looking forward to a return when things will get better.

 

Prayers to all those in deep grief and loss.

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I am shocked. I have not been to St. Thomas yet, I will be there next week on Victory. I have been to many of the islands though, and I always thought that St. Thomas was one of the safer ones. This is definately a wake up call for me. I am not going to stay on the ship because crime does happen everywhere and you still have to live your life. I will be more cautious about my surroundings though. I had no idea that this was going on there.

 

My thoughts are with the family. How awful to think about all the planning that went into this and the anticipation for a wonderful vacation. What a tragic ending.

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Uh, "this can happen anywhere"........hope nobody takes statements like that too seriously.

 

While all of us love to party on whatever island cruiselines take us to..and like to think how wonderful each port is.....it would be foolish to ignore the fact that EVERY port in the Caribbean is sadly......impoverished. Not poor.

IMPOVERISHED.

 

Therefore, crime will exist. And at levels which are hidden (as best as possible) from passengers ready to spend money.

 

Sometimes they can't hide it perfectly.

 

If you google Caribbean Murder Rate, Crime Rates, Etc.....you will find what most of us choose to ignore while planning to lollygag in our tourist clothes in crime ridden areas. Pays to be cautious.

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I first want to give my condolences to the family. I can't imagine going on a wonderful vacation and end up with a dead child - and such a senseless death. It has to be a parent's worst nightmare. I read the blogs from STT and it really made my blood run cold. We have been to STT three times and loved the island. We were there a year ago and we walked from the pier area to downtown - I remember passing the Yacht Club which was mentioned. I honestly had never thought anything about it. We research places to go and I would never venture out on my own in Jamaica, Belize, or several different other areas. But I don't recall anyone on the port websites mentioning it was dangerous in STT.

 

Whether it was an independent tour or a Carnival tour makes no difference to the cruise passenger - anyone could have been caught in crossfire. The only way to completely protect yourself anywhere is not to venture out. There will always be some risk. That's what disturbed me so horribly - I really thought STT was completely safe for tourists. St. Thomas is now off my radar screen for awhile for ports of call. While I enjoy Honduras, Belize, etc., at least there I always took what precautions I could - and knew even then you were not 100% safe. But I didn't think those dangers were so acute in STT just walking around on your own. Now everyone does know - so at least something has come out of so tragic a death.

 

I agree senseless deaths happen everywhere - but again, my prayers are with the family of the girl. Perhaps this will finally be the wake-up call to get violence under control in such a beautiful area.

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What happened at Coki Point is a horrible and tragic event. This, however, does not represent the US Virgin Islands at all. I have a 14 yr old neice, and cannot imagine what the family is going through.

 

It is far to easy to jump on the band wagon and say things and assume the worse about the island. Yes, drugs and gangs are an issue. Yes, this is a horrific event. Yes, the police/national guard needs to crack down on those involved in drugs and gangs. Yes, this could have happened in any little town or big city or in your neighborhood. And yes, it will start with me to help change things. Everyone should help change things here in the USVI and at their own homes.

 

I hope they find the people involved. I hope the families can heal (if that is possible). I hope the cruise lines will stay. I hope locals fight back against crime. I hope tourist continue to visit and see what we are really about. I hope we all can smile again soon

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The more I am reading about the Carribean, firstly the recent alleged troubles in St Lucia and now this very sad news I am becoming more apprehensive about my upcoming trip. I have booked excursions every day for my Southern Carribean cruise on the Victory, and whilst I will still take them I am thinking that 'doing my own thing' at the end of the excursion may not be a good idea. I am thinking that I will return and board the ship as soon as, and relax by the pool instead.

 

However I know that this terrible thing can happen anywhere...you only have to look at everyday news in London. As I am typing this I think to myself why should a few, blight a beautiful Island (or any city, Town, Country)?

 

My sympathies go out to the families concerned xx

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What happened at Coki Point is a horrible and tragic event. This, however, does not represent the US Virgin Islands at all. I have a 14 yr old neice, and cannot imagine what the family is going through.

 

It is far to easy to jump on the band wagon and say things and assume the worse about the island. Yes, drugs and gangs are an issue. Yes, this is a horrific event. Yes, the police/national guard needs to crack down on those involved in drugs and gangs. Yes, this could have happened in any little town or big city or in your neighborhood. And yes, it will start with me to help change things. Everyone should help change things here in the USVI and at their own homes.

 

I hope they find the people involved. I hope the families can heal (if that is possible). I hope the cruise lines will stay. I hope locals fight back against crime. I hope tourist continue to visit and see what we are really about. I hope we all can smile again soon

 

I agree wholeheartedly. Just curious, I noticed your location is listed as "in a hut". I wondered what city your hut is in?

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Before getting internet in the early 2000's my cruise research was done via travel books from the library. I remember reading that St. Thomas had a lot of crime and they gave borders to adhere to in the shopping district that the cruise lines so heavily promote. I distinctly remember them saying to avoid "Back Street".

In the late 60's we were walking on the main strret and decided to walk to the Synagogue. We stopped in one store to ask directions and were told to be very careful if you leave the main street. We were told to walk in the middle of the streets so that we wouldn't be surprized by a thug in an alley. We knew then that you must be vigilaant there.

In the 80's my boss spent a week at Frenchman's Reef. He came back with horror stories. He did not leave the resort except for one time when he went into town. A 10 year old boy came into the store to buy a chain . He had hundreds of dollars in his hand. After he left the clerk said it was probably drug money. She said that the stores close before sundown so that the workers can get home safely. After dark it is not safe.

In 1989 we sailed to St. Thomas and our ship stayed 2 days. Our children 19 and 21 went with some of the staff to a disco. The group of young passengers who went together asked the taxi driver to leave them off at the beach. He refused saying that it was not safe.

Based on the above , we rarely get off the ships in St. Thomas. WE stay by the pool on the ship.

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This is a fallacy to compare these venues of crime While I agree that crime happens - nothing like this has ever happened in my town - no one has been "gunned down in gang cross fire"

 

Its a tragedy... and so sad that we and the Bahamian police are so gung ho to catch and apprehend the "barefoot bandit" yet you hear nothing of this or any sort of justice for her parents on the news!

 

Its a fallacy not because it doesn't happen on other areas but because its like comparing apples to oranges. The vast majority of people who visit New Orleans and New York know there are areas of the crime and they avoid those areas or do not visit the cities.

 

But in areas dependent on tourism, things like this are pushed under a rug. They don't want this out there where they might lose money. Rather than fix the problems, they simply ignore them. I have seen it here in Florida and always warn my friends and family members who come here. The cruise industry is not going to make a big deal out of things like this because it will hurt business. Of course, then tragedies occur and everyone finds out.

 

So while crime may occur in New York and in St. Thomas, New York is not dependent on tourism and therefore, everyone talks about the crime there. Turn on your TV and you can find dozens of shows that capitalize on the crime in the big city. If we had this degree of honesty about some of our sunny beach locales maybe the communities would be more motivated to deal with the problem.

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Its a fallacy not because it doesn't happen on other areas but because its like comparing apples to oranges. The vast majority of people who visit New Orleans and New York know there are areas of the crime and they avoid those areas or do not visit the cities.

 

But in areas dependent on tourism, things like this are pushed under a rug. They don't want this out there where they might lose money. Rather than fix the problems, they simply ignore them. I have seen it here in Florida and always warn my friends and family members who come here. The cruise industry is not going to make a big deal out of things like this because it will hurt business. Of course, then tragedies occur and everyone finds out.

 

So while crime may occur in New York and in St. Thomas, New York is not dependent on tourism and therefore, everyone talks about the crime there. Turn on your TV and you can find dozens of shows that capitalize on the crime in the big city. If we had this degree of honesty about some of our sunny beach locales maybe the communities would be more motivated to deal with the problem.

 

True, to get money and mobilization..the first step is the publicity and reality of a problem. While I have not been to NYC since 9/11..things there made a vast improvement as well..after the bad comes the good...hope things move along swiftly because the Caribbean I want to explore is fabulous...I simply stand more informed...sjn911.

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It is far to easy to jump on the band wagon and say things and assume the worse about the island. Yes, drugs and gangs are an issue. Yes, this is a horrific event. Yes, the police/national guard needs to crack down on those involved in drugs and gangs. Yes, this could have happened in any little town or big city or in your neighborhood. And yes, it will start with me to help change things. Everyone should help change things here in the USVI and at their own homes.

 

 

Other than boycotting the island until the local authorities show they are serious about cleaning it up, what can WE do to help change things in the USVI?

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This is so tragic. My heart goes out to this family.

 

 

Although I do absolutely understand why the letter was worded the way it was, the it-wasn't-one-of-our-shore-excursion-taxis really struck me.

 

Is the letter worded that way to indicate that a ship's excursion taxi would not have been in that area?

 

Because it seems to me that this could have been anyone, on any shore excursion, at any time.

 

??

 

I wondered if I was the only one that saw that! The implication is, if you take a Carnival excursion you would be safe?

 

I wonder who the private tour operator was? (I haven't read all the thread, yet.)

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Other than boycotting the island until the local authorities show they are serious about cleaning it up, what can WE do to help change things in the USVI?

 

I doubt boycotting the island is the answer. That would decimate the local economy and would not be likely to help the situation.

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I doubt boycotting the island is the answer. That would decimate the local economy and would not be likely to help the situation.

 

Agreed..travel with care..but keep economy going...

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I'm not going to live in a box and stay home. I love St. Thomas and Gladys's Cafe. I won't boycott or skip cruising there due to this incident. However, I will think twice about going out exploring. As I stated earlier, it's good to be cautious. This just lets us know we need to be aware.

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Of course I may be misinformed, but I read on one blog that St Thomas had 57 homicides in one year and that there were only 100,000 residents. If this is true then someone should have figured out that it would only be a matter of time before a cruise line passenger got caught in the cross fire.

 

I wasn't naive enough to think there was no crime on St Thomas, but I did not know it was so bad.

 

THIS! I am getting sick and tired of reading posts saying it can happen anywhere blah blah blah. Yes, it CAN happen anywhere, but it seems that it's WAY more likely to happen in St. Thomas. I don't have time to look up all the stats right now, but from what I've been reading it appears that the murder rate there is higher than ANY city in the mainland US. I live in the Washington DC area and I assure you that I don't even think about wandering around the bad neighborhoods of DC. Little did I know how much safer I would be in the worse parts of DC than in St. Thomas. It is really scary to me that the cruise lines are taking people there with no warning about this. I was in St. Thomas a few months ago and took the safari taxi. I did tons of research here on CC and other sites in advance and didn't see ANYTHING about any perceived danger. If I had any of this information I NEVER would have done that. This makes me not only never want to go back to St. Thomas, but it makes me think twice about cruising anywhere in the Caribbean if the crime in these islands can be this bad and is downplayed by the islands AND the cruise lines.

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THIS! I am getting sick and tired of reading posts saying it can happen anywhere blah blah blah. Yes, it CAN happen anywhere, but it seems that it's WAY more likely to happen in St. Thomas. I don't have time to look up all the stats right now, but from what I've been reading it appears that the murder rate there is higher than ANY city in the mainland US. I live in the Washington DC area and I assure you that I don't even think about wandering around the bad neighborhoods of DC. Little did I know how much safer I would be in the worse parts of DC than in St. Thomas. It is really scary to me that the cruise lines are taking people there with no warning about this. I was in St. Thomas a few months ago and took the safari taxi. I did tons of research here on CC and other sites in advance and didn't see ANYTHING about any perceived danger. If I had any of this information I NEVER would have done that. This makes me not only never want to go back to St. Thomas, but it makes me think twice about cruising anywhere in the Caribbean if the crime in these islands can be this bad and is downplayed by the islands AND the cruise lines.

 

Seriously:confused: how can you say that it's more likely to happen in St. Thomas, then anywhere else?? It sounds as though your statement might be a bit off, coming from someone living in the DC metro area (where I grew up). IMO, I bet your chances of getting mugged or shot in DC are far greater then in St. Thomas.

 

It's unfortunate that this happened, but unless you want to live in a box, IT CAN HAPPEN ANYWHERE. Would you stop flying because of a plane crash? I hope not. If you think of all of the cruise passengers that have visited all of these islands and then figure how many people have been accosted, mugged, murdered, etc., then I bet it's <1%.

 

People should always live for today and not what could happen tomorrow or next week.

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I doubt boycotting the island is the answer. That would decimate the local economy and would not be likely to help the situation.

 

I wasn't necessarily advocating that. I was just trying to get that poster to tell me just exactly how WE can change what's happening in St. Thomas.

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