Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Memorial service for Mario Graniel and Dr. Paul Swank #543125
06/23/20 10:54 AM
06/23/20 10:54 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 73,320
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP
[Linked Image]

Memorial service was held today for San Pedrano Mario Graniel and American National Dr. Paul Swank who were murdered a year ago, to this date, on a fly fishing trip on Ambergris Caye. The San Pedro Police Department organized a short ceremony conducted by Father Scott on the site of the murder.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

More in the San Pedro Sun

Re: Memorial service for Mario Graniel and Dr. Paul Swank [Re: Marty] #543136
06/24/20 04:18 AM
06/24/20 04:18 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 73,320
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP

San Pedro - one Year Later, from Death Island to Peace Town

Our next story may strike you as a softer story you would normally see at the end of the news. It's a story about a murder in San Pedro - but one that happened a year ago. And, it's also a story about how NO murders have happened on San Pedro since then. It is significant and encouraging milestone, and perhaps an example of how a properly police community can manage itself. Jules Vasquez took a deeper look:

From 2016 to 2018, San Pedro seemed to be in the news weekly with some outrageous act of violence, from drug murders to killings of expatriate businesspersons, to truly wild acts of police brutality. And then it culminated in this murder of tour guide Mario Graniel and his guest on June 23, 2019. It was a killing linked to the underworld - but it became world news - on CNN - when the vacationing American Doctor, Gary Swank was killed while on a fishing tour, as his family waited for him at the hotel. It became an international incident, the ultimate black eye for Belize.

Trip cancellations were coming fast and furious and, days later, the community let their displeasure be known as they fatigued the commissioner of police:

FILE: Thu, June 27, 2019
Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

"I must say that it had indeed been a difficult time for me. I am doing my utmost best with the support of my staff to ensure that we find those persons who are responsible for the death of Dr. Swank and Mr. Graniel. I can assure you that I am not going to rest until they are caught."

Today, exactly one year later, the killers have not been caught, but there is some healing; police accompanied Graniel's daughter to the exact location where he was killed to lay a wreath in the water. The murder has never been solved, but the act gave her some closure:

Debbie Graniel, Daughter of deceased
"It was nice to have the memorial. I didn't get to go to the place where he died last year, so it was nice to go there and visit. It was very difficult to cope with it because it's a little scary what we believe what happened, the persons that we believe are behind the murder are still out free."

She was accompanied on that trip by the officer commanding San Pedro, Chris Noble. He was brought in to take over island security and build community confidence last year when police and the state had to step up with a credible response for Belize's top tourism destination. And it has paid off in spades. San Pedro has gone one year since that murder without a killing, and major crimes have been down for 12 consecutive months. It's a remarkable turnaround, and in January, Noble told us it's a community success:

Supt. Chris Noble, OC, San Pedro
"Our strategy has been very basic, it's back to basic policing: the patrols, the meet and greets, the accessibility to some extent and the community has responded in kind and it has been overwhelming."

Jules Vasquez
"How much of a tool is the use of force in cracking down on the gangs, because that's what a lot of people wants, you just go in there and burst men heads."

Supt. Chris Noble, OC, San Pedro
"We don't need the brute force, you need education, you need to work with people and even if it is kicking in a door you kick in the door, but you are cordial, courteous, you're human to a human."

Jules Vasquez
"You all have to deal with there are ruthless and lawless drug gangs out there."

Supt. Chris Noble, OC, San Pedro
"When it comes to having ruthless people, it is human. There is no bad human, there is a human with bad intensions."

It may sound like cockeyed optimism, but it's been working - and today, San Pedro is a place of peace after a remarkable year of calm. What everyone hopes now is that peace can continue to prevail when the island starts welcoming tourists again later this year.

For 2018, and up to the first half of 2019, there were a total of 21 murders on San Pedro. Since then, there have been none.

Channel 7

Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
Click for excellent scuba lessons with Elbert Greer!
Chaa Creek is an award-winning luxury Belize Resort, rated as one of the worlds best Eco Lodges. We are a pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981!
Maruba Beach Klub and Spa is the premiere Secret Beach spa and restaurant located on the crystal blue waters of the Caribbean Sea at the center of Secret Beach, Belize
First Class Accommodations for the Budget Traveler
First Class Accommodations for the Budget Traveler

Things to do

Daily News
Daily Weather

Classified Ads
San Pedro Sun
Ambergris Today
SP Town Council
Channel 7
Channel 5
Love FM
The Reporter
TV Newscasts
Radio Stations

Click for our
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites

Event Guides
Event Calendar
Specials & Events
Things to Do
iTravel Belize
Paradise Theater
San Pedro Fun Finder
Paradise Guy Event Calendar
Cayo Event Calendar

San Pedro Scoop!
Tia Chocolate
My Beautiful Belize
I-Travel Belize
Belize Adventure
Belize Hub
Romantic Travel
Belize Happy Adventures
Conch Creative
Caribbean Culture & Lifestyle
More Blogs...
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites
White Sands Dive Shop - 5 Star PADI Dive Facility - Daily diving, SCUBA instruction and Snorkeling
Caribbean Inspired All Natural Condiments & Spice Blends, Over 100 are Gluten Free!
We manage a variety of homes, apartments, condos and commercial properties here on Ambergris Caye. Our minimum lease on ALL properties is six months.
Click for Ian Anderson's Caves Branch, Welcome to a World of Adventure
Lil Alphonse has snorkel equipment to fit anyone as well as Marine Park Tickets and flotation devices to assist those not as experienced.
Coastal Xpress offers a daily scheduled ferry run to most resorts, restaurants and private piers on the island of Anbergris Caye. We also offer  private and charter water taxi service.
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31
Cayo Espanto
Click for Cayo Espanto, and have your own private island
More Links
Click for exciting and adventurous tours of Belize with Katie Valk!
ShoutChat Box
Who's Online Now
0 registered members (), 187 guests, and 0 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Statistics
Most Online4,377
Dec 15th, 2020 HELP! Visitor Center Goods & Services San Pedro Town Message Board Lodging Diving Fishing Things to Do History Maps Phonebook Belize Business Directory Picture of the Day

The opinions and views expressed on this board are the subjective opinions of Ambergris Caye Message Board members
and not of the Ambergris Caye Message Board its affiliates, or its employees.

Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.1