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Caribbean: Recent Attack in Dominica

By Sue Richards last modified Jun 01, 2009 02:29 PM

Published: 2009-06-01 14:29:57
Countries: Dominica

Received From: Helen Clarke (PAYS)
Subject: Unfortunate Incident in Prince Rupert Bay

On behalf of PAYS (the Portsmouth Association of Yacht Security)and the boat boys, I would like to clarify the situation with regards to security and safety in Prince Rupert Bay.

As was reported, unfortunately we had a very concerning crime against our visitors Suzanne and John Dyer on May 14th 2009. All members of PAYS are very concerned about this incident and are working diligently with the authorities to apprehend the culprits.

In the meantime, we would again like to reiterate that all boats visiting Portsmouth harbor in the North end of the Bay from Blue Bay to Purple Turtle where we provide night security. Dominica is not any more dangerous than any other place in the world (this being the first incident in four years) but unfortunately, as anywhere nowadays; criminals can take advantage of unsuspecting visitors when they find them outside of the normal marina area especially when it is secluded and away from other habitation and activity as in this situation.

Next year we will have two boats at our disposal and will hopefully be able to also extend the security further south on Wednesday and Saturday nights (“Loud music nights”) for those visitors who do not want to be near the loud music - but as always we still request that all boats moor in the main anchorage area.

If anyone has any questions regarding security in Prince Rupert Bay, please feel free to contact either Jeff Frank (President of PAYS – tel 767 245 0125) or Hubert Winston (Chairman of Dominica Marine Association – tel 767 275 2851). In the meantime, we once again wish Suzanne and John a speedy recovery from their incident and are available for any assistance they may need.

Received From: Chris Doyle (author of the Sailors Guides to the Caribbean)
Subject: Attack in Portsmouth Harbour

I am really sorry about the attack on John and Suzanne in Portsmouth, Dominica. Over the last years the group PAYS (mainly small local businesses) has run a very effective nightly patrol on the the northern side of the harbour and there have been no problems in that area, which is where most boats anchor.

I do understand the wish to avoid the loud music from Big Pappas which is on Wednesday and Saturday nights, Saturday as I remember being much louder. Luckily PAYS have managed to get a little more help, and plan to run patrols on the south side of the harbour on the music nights next season.

Having said that, Dominica does not have a particularly bad record for this kind of thing, we have had occasional really nasty incidents in many islands, and luckily if the police take action and catch the culprits it stops. I do know the police are really working hard on this and hope they manage to catch these criminals.

Received From: John Dyer, SV Demara

Please see report here which reports that 24 incidents in Dominica have been reported to Caribbean Safety & Security Net in the last three and a half years.