Jump to content

Letter from Carnival Victory Captain confirming shooting death of passenger


paulandfran

Recommended Posts

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.

 

That's very true. While the population may be 100,000.. there are literally thousands of people who visit every day.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Such a sad tragedy for the victim and her family. My feelings go out to them.

 

I had no idea that St. Thomas was a place to be on your guard. I have been there three times and have never heard anything negative until today. I guess the authorities hide the negativity well. This is the type of thing I would expect from some other place.

 

What really gets me is that St. Thomas is probably the most popular port. All the cruise lines go there. I wrongly figured that the island was safer than it actually was because of its popularity and the fact that it is an American territory.

 

I will continue to visit St. Thomas, if we choose a cruise itinerary that includes it. But I will definitely be more aware of my surroundings while I am there.

 

Man, so many things I have learned since I joined Cruise Critic!

Link to post
Share on other sites

all of you people saying it can happen anywhere are in denial...imho...

 

The USVI has an overall population less than 150K. We are very close to leading the WORLD in murders per capita. The online paper screws up the murder total on a daily basis. Today for example with the two yesterday it shows 42...Last week it said 43 .

 

Trust me when I tell you it is well over 50 for the year. We currently have 5-10 "unclassified deaths" . A murder suicide has not been counted because the guy killed himself AFTER he shot his wife...hmmm.. A guy found dead in a burning car....not a murder...really?...

 

A suspect turned himself in today along with his lawyer...Yet it is being widely reported that MANY people were shooting at the funeral. The red car was covered in bullets. Similar story at the kmart shooting last week.

 

They are calling this a "tragic accident" and that is insulting to people who actually die in tragic accidents.

 

This on the other hand was a completely avoidable situation and any of you of think otherwise are fooling yourselves. The lack of police officers at this funeral is absurd. I can not wait to hear the spin they put on this one.

 

Last year a man, sitting on his sofa on a Sunday afternoon with his wife and two sons heard gun shots outside...He went to investigate and was shot in the back as he ran away and again at point blank range.

 

The police chief said this..."He was in the wrong place at the wrong time" and that is not out of context.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome to Cruisecritic Joe.

 

We aren't saying there isn't crime there, but there is crime in other places, too. My area is mostly senior citizens, but we have gangs (which go unreported) and drugs in my area. The police are stretched thin and cannot be everywhere.

 

With St. Thomas, you have literally thousands of people visiting daily. We haven't heard of much crime regarding a passenger. The stats for murders and crime change when you factor in the tourists and other visitors to St. Thomas.

 

With Jamaica on the other hand, we are constantly getting reports from passengers of all sorts of crimes and criminal activity. In Panama, there are armed soldiers in the streets. I can tell you from experience that Colon is not a pleasant or pretty place to visit. That's why they tell us NOT to visit the town, but go out into the country. As stated above, the people in these places are very very poor. Limon is another destination that is very high in crime. We made the mistake of trying to walk around the town. There were at LEAST 6 huge bodyguards at the bank in Limon. We had to pass by them to get into the bank. We were looking for a real estate brochure for a friend and were directed to the bank. It hit us at that moment how dangerous it was for us to be out in that town.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Such a sad tragedy for the victim and her family. My feelings go out to them.

 

I had no idea that St. Thomas was a place to be on your guard. I have been there three times and have never heard anything negative until today. I guess the authorities hide the negativity well. This is the type of thing I would expect from some other place.

 

What really gets me is that St. Thomas is probably the most popular port. All the cruise lines go there. I wrongly figured that the island was safer than it actually was because of its popularity and the fact that it is an American territory.

 

I will continue to visit St. Thomas, if we choose a cruise itinerary that includes it. But I will definitely be more aware of my surroundings while I am there.

 

Man, so many things I have learned since I joined Cruise Critic!

 

I posted some of this last night on the thread that got moved, but a former co-worker of mine lived in St. Thomas for quite some time. After one of my cruises I was going on and on about how beautiful St. Thomas was and how much I'd like to live there. She told me the crime was VERY well hidden from the tourists because they don't want to lose the $$$. But that in the time she lived there, she did not know one person who hadn't been robbed, shot, or raped and that she couldn't wait to move back the mainland.

Link to post
Share on other sites
This is just nuts. We were just at Coki in Dec and had such a good time and everyone seemed so nice, Very sad and scary :(

 

Same with our family. We were just there on the New Years Cruise.......

Stacy

Link to post
Share on other sites
I posted some of this last night on the thread that got moved, but a former co-worker of mine lived in St. Thomas for quite some time. After one of my cruises I was going on and on about how beautiful St. Thomas was and how much I'd like to live there. She told me the crime was VERY well hidden from the tourists because they don't want to lose the $$$. But that in the time she lived there, she did not know one person who hadn't been robbed, shot, or raped and that she couldn't wait to move back the mainland.

 

I spoke to my sister by phone today---the one I mentioned earlier who owns a nice home in St. Thomas but refuses to live there. She said another crime that goes unreported (or underreported or misreported) is rape, and that home invasions are becoming much more common. It's no wonder she doesn't want to live there!

 

It's sad for the upstanding, law abiding locals who WANT things to change but are helpless to do anything about the situation.

Link to post
Share on other sites
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?

 

It's the U.S. Virgin Islands, write your Congressman.

Link to post
Share on other sites

One has to be very careful..will say this..remember my grandma getting mugged on way to visiting my grandfather in Billings, MT during one of his heart attacks in the seventies.

About 70,000 folks at the time lived there..crime at a minimum but hey..thugs figured out how to hit on sr. women visiting husbands in a fairly "nice" part of town where hospital was.

 

Now my grandma just held onto her purse and let the guy drag her 2 blocks..in her seventies...then walked into the hospital with one broken purse strap..(not two) and passed out as soon as she got through ER doors. She was tough..always said it was stupid not to carrey a double strapped purse...smiles.

 

I know this is different..and all the gang stuff and increasing per capita issues...plus economy woes...we have to be aware..but if folks still cruise to Mexican Riviera etc....and other risk areas..we just have to use caution big time..research..and know where "off the path is" and what is close to that...this was awful..awful enough and reported enough to start change I hope.

Link to post
Share on other sites

What a shame for this young girl to loose her life over fools that must use violence as a way of life. Unfortunatley in todays world we can never be lulled into a strictly vacation mode, we should be vigilant at all times. Deepest sadness for this family & their lose.

Link to post
Share on other sites
First of all, my heart goes out to the family of this little girl. I cannot imagine what they are going through.

 

We have been going to St. Thomas via cruise ships since the early 80's. Probably visited this island 30 times.

It's a well known fact that the crime activity in St. Thomas is out of control due to drugs and gangs. And it's been a well known fact for years. If you read the current statistics on the number of murders versus population on the island, the statistics are horrible. 400% higher than the most crime ridden areas of the US. The US Navy quit coming to St. Thomas years ago due to drug and crime issues, and opted to got to St. Croix for their crews to have shore leave for a day or two.

 

Sure, crime happens everywhere. But this was a senseless act of murder due to gang activity. Seems like the police should have known there could have been a potential for gang retaliation during the funeral. And, I agree that there is a huge probability for more gang retaliation.

 

I loved coming to St. Thomas in our earlier cruising years, but to tell you the truth, I don't really get excited about visting this island anymore.

Tortola and the BVI's would be a much better replacement in my opinion.

 

I don't believe it was "well known" among cruisers. You may have been aware but most people were not aware it was so dangerous. This wouldn't even have been such a big story if it had happened in Jamaica. I pray for her family.

Link to post
Share on other sites
It's the U.S. Virgin Islands, write your Congressman.

 

 

And my Congressman (from Texas) will do what? If I had a problem with crime in your state, and wrote to my Congressman, what would he do about it?

 

EDIT: I just realized that you might be from Canada. But you get my point.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Welcome to Cruisecritic Joe.

 

With St. Thomas, you have literally thousands of people visiting daily. We haven't heard of much crime regarding a passenger.

 

Where are you getting your crime against tourists/cruise passengers statistics from? Or are you assuming this just because you haven't heard of anything?

Link to post
Share on other sites
Where are you getting your crime against tourists/cruise passengers statistics from? Or are you assuming this just because you haven't heard of anything?

 

I'll answer more politely than you. Yes, I said HEARD. Trust me, these boards and places like them are good sources for first hand information with crimes against passengers. We would be hearing more about it. There were stats listed above in this thread based on a population of 100,000 perm. residents. I'm saying you need to factor in the thousands who pour into the port on a daily basis. I researched today regarding crime in St. Thomas and a few sites said there places you just don't go in St. Thomas, but that overall it's still safe as long as you are careful. I can get the link to the one article.

 

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Caribbean_and_Central_America/U_S_Virgin_Islands/St_Thomas/Charlotte_Amalie-1645936/Warnings_or_Dangers-Charlotte_Amalie-BR-1.html

 

http://www.vimovingcenter.com/island_living/crime.php

Link to post
Share on other sites
It is good to hear that Captain Messina has said that Carnival is suspending Coki Beach on their tours. The unfortunate thing is this can happen there, another island, Europe or to me walking down the street here in Tampa....

 

Or here in Hamilton Ontario. These things do happen, albeit rarely, thank goodness.

Although Carnival isn't in any way responsible, the Captains' and corporate action to react swiftly speaks well for Carnival. Appropriate!

 

My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the young lady who perished. So very, very sad.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think if many US travellers from many states wrote about US territories to their Senators and Reps..travel being vital to any tropical local..it could help..anything going in the right direction helps...sjn911.

Link to post
Share on other sites
all of you people saying it can happen anywhere are in denial...imho...

The USVI has an overall population less than 150K. We are very close to leading the WORLD in murders per capita. The online paper screws up the murder total on a daily basis. Today for example with the two yesterday it shows 42...Last week it said 43 .

Trust me when I tell you it is well over 50 for the year. We currently have 5-10 "unclassified deaths" . A murder suicide has not been counted because the guy killed himself AFTER he shot his wife...hmmm.. A guy found dead in a burning car....not a murder...really?...

 

A suspect turned himself in today along with his lawyer...Yet it is being widely reported that MANY people were shooting at the funeral. The red car was covered in bullets. Similar story at the kmart shooting last week.

They are calling this a "tragic accident" and that is insulting to people who actually die in tragic accidents.

This on the other hand was a completely avoidable situation and any of you of think otherwise are fooling yourselves. The lack of police officers at this funeral is absurd. I can not wait to hear the spin they put on this one.

Last year a man, sitting on his sofa on a Sunday afternoon with his wife and two sons heard gun shots outside...He went to investigate and was shot in the back as he ran away and again at point blank range.

The police chief said this..."He was in the wrong place at the wrong time" and that is not out of context.

 

Thanks for the info JoeFriday. It is always helpfull when someone with a close-up view reports.

Everyone here might not agree with you, but surely your information is an insight. Thanks for posting.

Link to post
Share on other sites
And my Congressman (from Texas) will do what? If I had a problem with crime in your state, and wrote to my Congressman, what would he do about it?

 

EDIT: I just realized that you might be from Canada. But you get my point.

 

My 'Northern' understanding of US Territories is they don't have Congressmen of their own.

 

Besides, if they can stick their nose into Cruise ship rail heights they can stick their nose into this. ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites
While attending a Captain's Roundtable on a Royal Caribbean Panama Canal cruise one of the attendees asked why the cruise lines go to such dangerous ports as Cartagena, Columbia. The Captain responded that the most dangerous ports are within the U.S.A. with Miami leading the pack.

My sympathies go out to the family. The driver, a local, should have known that this was a dangerous area. We should all be aware of our surroundings even while on vacation.

This could happen to any one of us in any port or at home. If it had not been a cruise passenger, we wouldn't have even heard about it. Unfortunately we live in a violent world.

If St. Thomas wants to continue surviving with tourism dollars, it needs to be more aware of how far reaching a negative events like this one is and what it can do to it's economy.

 

Whoever the driver was (no doubt one of the various ones with open safari vans touted on these boards) ....there is NO way he would know that THAT PARTICULAR DAY there would be a gang burial/retaliation

 

This happened at a cemetery....NOT at the beach

 

Many people on these boards like Coki Beach...some didn't like the "shady" characters hanging around there, drug dealers etc

 

Maybe a good idea is to NOT venture into the "real" areas where the people live, stay closer to the tourist areas

 

google drive by shooting and see how many happen here....for those worried about media coverage. I also think it was smart of Carnival to say right out it was NOT their excursion so that media would not falsely claim it was etc

 

http://letyoutellit.com/2010/04/11/sad-7-year-old-girl-killed-in-miami-drive-by-shooting/

 

http://www.chicagobreakingnews.com/2010/02/3-people-shot-in-humboldt-park.html

 

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2009/06/driveby_shooting_kills_13yearo.html

 

http://www.ktvu.com/news/22373013/detail.html

 

Here is a Miami drive by at a funeral

 

http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2010-07-03/news/fl-miami-funeral-shooting-20100703_1_drive-by-shooting-neal-cuevas-north-miami

 

and I didn't even google California, too many to list

 

some of these are very very recent....and did not get national attention

 

nor do the cities "warn" tourists

Link to post
Share on other sites
My 'Northern' understanding of US Territories is they don't have Congressmen of their own.

 

Besides, if they can stick their nose into Cruise ship rail heights they can stick their nose into this. ;)

 

I have zero confidence that our Congress will do anything to address the crime situation in St. Thomas, even if more than a handful of our fellow CC members write their congressmen. I suspect that it will require the threat of a tourist boycott or losing a cruise line or two to make the local authorities crack down on these gangs and other criminals.

 

However, it would not pain me to be wrong.

 

BTW, each of the US territories do have a representative in the House of Representatives. Their representatives may sit on committees and vote in said committees, but do not have a vote on the floor.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Thank You for 25 Years - Click for Fun Stuff!
      • Forum Assistance
      • Q&A: Cruise Insurance with Steve Dasseos of TripInsuranceStore.com - June 2021
      • ICYM Our Cruise Critic Live Special Event: Explore the Remote World with Hurtigruten!
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...