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#227241 - 01/18/07 02:39 PM Just a friendly reminder....  
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 4
Married in AC Offline
Married in AC  Offline
My husband and I just returned from our third trip to AC. AC is very beautiful, fun, friendly, and charming, but we encountered the ugly underbelly of the island this time and want to remind everyone to be cautious and aware of your surroundings.
This trip, we stayed at an inexpensive place in town. One afternoon/evening, my husband and I, along with our friends who were staying on the south side of the island tied on a few drinks and had a great time partying in town. We retired to our room early (around 9:30). At about 10:30, my husband decided we needed some bottles of water, so he ventured out across the street to the store, and I must have dozed off. At around 2:00 am, I woke up to my husband standing in the doorway of our hotel room, completely dazed, confused, and filthy dirty.
Apparently, the store across from our hotel was closed, so he went down a side street (not an alley, but a pretty wide street) to try another store. At that point, he was attacked by three young men. He was knocked in the head with some sort of pole, beaten up pretty badly, and robbed. He was most likely knocked unconscious since he was gone for so long, but he's having trouble remembering a lot of the attack. The incident has both of us really shaken up, and I mostly blame myself and my husband for not being more aware and cautious. If I wouldn't have had so much to drink, I would have never let him go out; if he hadn't had so much to drink, even if he did go out, he would have been more aware of his surroundings, etc, etc, etc.
So, please, eat, drink, be merry, have a great time, but remember there are people everywhere (not just in AC) who are watching and waiting to take advantage of us. Don't go anywhere alone, be extremely aware of your surroundings, and stay in more populated areas.
I'm very sad because now this attack has become the dominant memory in my mind about AC, and not my beautiful wedding 5 1/2 years ago or the wonderful people and places we've met and seen in Belize over our several trips there. I don't want this to happen to anyone else.
Be happy, be careful. Peace.

#227242 - 01/18/07 02:47 PM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: Married in AC]  
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,429
dogmatic prevaricator Offline
dogmatic prevaricator  Offline
Did you contact the authorities?

If you must choose between two evils, pick the one you've never tried before.
#227246 - 01/18/07 02:58 PM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: dogmatic prevaricator]  
Joined: May 2000
Posts: 6,674
Amanda Syme Offline
Amanda Syme  Offline
That is a terribly sad story. The island is going through some serious growing pains and gaining control of a population that is exploding is a huge task. So many out of work strangers - opportunists by nature, are in our midsts. The police are trying to get a handle on this ugly side of life and will hopefully oust this bad element sooner than later.

Thanks for being cognizant that this awful crime could have happened in any small town - but it is certainly not an event that should be chalked up to experience.

Did you make a police report? Can your husband describe the bad guys? If you can come up with any other facts that might be helpful send me a private message please.

#227260 - 01/18/07 04:27 PM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: Amanda Syme]  
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 4
Married in AC Offline
Married in AC  Offline
We did not file a police report. My husband doesn't remember what the guys looked like other than local, dark skinned, white shirts. He really only remembers the initial blow to the head. He also thinks he heard someone say, "there's one" right before he was attacked. We have constructed the rest of the story from the hideous, shoe shaped bruises up his back and legs and the missing money from his wallet.

#227265 - 01/18/07 04:42 PM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: Married in AC]  
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 101
KVarner Offline
KVarner  Offline
Wow, I know how difficult this is. I was a medical volunteer in Ghana last summer and something much like this happened. It really, really sucks. It is why I never leave my house now without carrying a gun (I can do this legally in the US). That is my one reservation about moving to Belize--I can't have guns, so its harder to defend myself.

In any case, I'm very, very sorry for what happened. It really sucks.

I'm not over what happened to me in Ghana yet, I still have nightmares, and despite all of the wonderful people in Ghana, the one thing that sticks out in my mind is what happened. I hope that you will come back to AC many many times, and develop more wonderful memories to outweight that one horrible one.

Can you tell us exactly where it happened? Somewhere in San Pablo, but where? I'd like to avoid this area!

#227268 - 01/18/07 04:47 PM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: Married in AC]  
Joined: May 2000
Posts: 6,674
Amanda Syme Offline
Amanda Syme  Offline
Details are good as they help ascertain whether the bad guys are from the island, the Belize mainland, or one of the neighbouring countries. You can often distinguish them from one another by the language they speak, the colour of their skin and how they dress. So, even the little your husband remembers is good info.

Since they spoke english, are dark skinned and violent I can tell you right now that they are not San Pedranos.

It is a shame that you didn't make a police report. It is always helpful to make a report because it alerts the police to a problem that they may not be aware of. Many criminals in this town are caught within hours of making a report. Because we are on an island it is difficult for the bad guys to make a quick get-a-way without being seen by somebody who can identify them.

Again, I am deeply saddened by this awful crime and will be reporting the details you are providing to the police. If they can match this event to any possible suspects the small details can often help nail those bad boys.

#227457 - 01/19/07 05:18 PM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: Amanda Syme]  
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 4
Married in AC Offline
Married in AC  Offline
We didn't make a police report for a couple of reasons (other than not really remembering much). First, we were just really freaked out, and I was worried about the remainder of our stay, the possibility of a "revenge" attack if word got out that we reported the incident.
We were also told by several "gringos" who live on the island that the police were somewhat corrupt and would not do anything about it.
We probably should have reported it, but, quite frankly, I was scared to death to draw any more attention to myself or my husband. I'm still having an extremely hard time getting over the incident. Not to mention my husband (although he's being a "man" about it and calling it no big deal).
I just hope that my posting this here will make a difference and prevent this happening to someone else.
Thanks, everyone, for your kind words and supportive PM's.
Now that we are off the island, if you would like me or my husband to talk with the police, we are happy to do so.

Last edited by Married in AC; 01/19/07 10:53 PM.
#227492 - 01/19/07 11:10 PM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: Married in AC]  
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 120
RNdiver Offline
RNdiver  Offline
Geez Married.. can I ask where you were staying?

#227497 - 01/20/07 02:48 AM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: RNdiver]  
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 424
ida_y_vuelta Offline
ida_y_vuelta  Offline
something similar happened to a friend... she was walking the beach at nite and was mugged for her purse with measely $20 in it... fortunate for her it was replaceable!!!! i kno that that incident is still in the back of her mind but i kno that it's made her a stronger person too... like she thinks twice about what she does and where she goes... especially not alone!!!

Sorry to hear about ur vacation! but on the plus side u do have more positive memories than negative! and in the long run it is a good learning experience for everyone! i kno a lot of ppl that learn their lesson a lot quicker when something hits so close to home... unfortunately we do live in a live and learn world!

i do hope ur positive/good memories of Belize overpower this negative experience for u!

#227511 - 01/20/07 11:03 AM Re: Just a friendly reminder.... [Re: ida_y_vuelta]  
Joined: May 2000
Posts: 6,674
Amanda Syme Offline
Amanda Syme  Offline
Hi Married, of course it will help, can you send me a pm with your email contact info. I can fully understand how scary this experience was and it will take a while for it not to be raw.

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