Dominica netball team manager speaks out after armed robbery in St. Lucia

The Manager of the Dominica under 16 national netball team, Fiona Vidal, believes that enough was not done by law enforcement officers following her holdup by an armed man in Castries on Friday evening.

“I find enough wasn’t done – I mean they should have patrolled the place  for example. The only thing they did when that happened was a drive around – just driving around, not even walk around to see if they threw the bag in a gutter,” Vidal said.

She explained that she and members of  the Dominica netball contingent arrived here on Friday afternoon at around 5:25 pm.

Dominica Under 16 National Netball Team

Vidal said the group was transported to a guest house in two vehicles.

She was with the second group.

The team manager explained that when they got to the guest house, the girls  complained of being hungry.

Vidal recalled telling the girls to put away their luggage as they would  go to the nearby KFC outlet in Castries to get something to eat.

Vidal said although the KFC outlet was within walking distance of the guest house where they had been taken, the bus driver offered to take them there.

“I am the manager, I was the one with the cash because we just came in, there was no way I could put the cash in the guest house or anything – we had just landed,” she stated.

Vidal said after placing the orders, she opened an envelope and paid $300 at the cashier.

She said she was not aware that anyone was watching her.

“There was no way I took out the whole cash and put on the counter – that’s not true,” she told reporters here, adding that it was not the first time she has travelled with a bulk of money.

She said she and those who had accompanied her went upstairs to eat, spending some time eating, drinking, talking and laughing.

Vidal said when they were finished, they decided to walk back to their guest house as the other coaches knew the place.

She said while walking, it was noticed that a netballer was lagging behind, whereupon a coach told here to come up front.

“About two minutes after speaking to the child I just felt someone tugging at my bag, so I held on to it,” the team manager recalled.

“When I turned around I just saw a tough, dark Rastaman with a gun pointing at me,” Vidal said.

She said the man kept telling her in kweyol to let go of the bag and give it it him.

Vidal said she held on to the bag, but realising that the man was “so desperate”, she let go of it.

She revealed that the bag contained over $14,000, including her personal cash and other valuables, including a credit card, her travel documents and her mobile telephone.

The man then fled.

The Dominica team manager said an alarm  was raised, whereupon a police officer in a vehicle came to their assistance and took them to to the CID Office where interviews were conducted.

“So far, just interviews, interviews, interviews, report and no lead,” Vidal observed.

“They did not even say “Take a walk in the area  where it happened’ honesty, I was waiting for them on Saturday to come and say :’Miss Vidal let’s take a walk to see what happened’, nobody – up to now,” she complained.

She said the only thing that was done was to drive around.

“I have nothing!” Vidal exclaimed.

She said the girls who were with her were traumatised.

However she said the girls decided afterwards that they are strong players.

“They said ‘Miss, we came here for a purpose – we came to play and we will play,” Vidal said, adding that her team defeated Saint Lucia in the first game.

Games continue Tuesday morning and Tuesday evening, she said.

44 Comments

  1. Cautious
    April 18, 2017 at 8:19 am

    In all honesty u can’t say that that’s all the police did was drive around… that’s all u saw that they did.. they may have done more.. with that said, I am so sorry that u had that experience in Saint Lucia.. we are generally a nice bunch of people but off course there are a few rotten eggs with no regard or respect for people’s property.. I hope that you all recover your belongings and that u come again to represent your country.. and I sincerely hope that your next trip will b a more enjoyable one

  2. sharon terrell
    April 18, 2017 at 9:14 am

    Well,well,well.I tell you.This sound like a duce ball.How all of a sudden a rasta come up from behind the group pulling on the bag,one of the netball players was so tired she could not keep up with the group she was lagging behind.That sounds like a script.Because that netball player was just out of the blue lagging in the dark,a place she don’t know.Very interesting.And walking around,with large sums of monies taking it out from a bag is very careless and dumb.As soon as you’ll leave the KFC you’ll get robbed lol you’ll must speak to the bus driver.Because he could have made a call to the rastaman.Taking monies out of envelopes of course you have money in that bag.Or the rastaman was watching you’ll at the KFC so the transaction and striked.St.lucia to the Police do you’ll jobs.Its serve and protect,stop leaving our citizens and visitors hanging.

    1. Look before you leap
      April 18, 2017 at 7:51 pm

      Terrell your comment is as contradicting as a squirrel deciding which side of the street he should run to. It is clear “empty barrels make the most noise”. Dumb.

  3. Lucianman101
    April 18, 2017 at 9:26 am

    Such a sad state of affairs, hopefully they get their travel documents back at least

  4. Anonymous
    April 18, 2017 at 9:27 am

    This story is missing some parts or perhaps it’s the way it’s written.On a other note more policing needs to be done in central areas particularly around weekends and holidays. Sorry Madame for your experience.

  5. praise
    April 18, 2017 at 9:27 am

    This is unfortunate that happen to a foreign young team to experience such,hope that the POLICE make some discovery very soon

    1. Shanta
      April 22, 2017 at 11:27 am

      There no way people can past throw with more than fourteen thousand dollar limited is 10.000 to travel with

  6. John dennis
    April 18, 2017 at 10:14 am

    that’s why I hate that country. everyone desperate….sorry but I can never go back there….they to thief

    1. Anonymous
      April 18, 2017 at 12:04 pm

      No every one down there is a crooked and besides I was robbed in Dominica of my possions too

  7. mwen mem
    April 18, 2017 at 10:26 am

    I am upset that she got robbed….immensely!!! However , why would you walk with so much money … I would understand if u hadn’t been to the guest house… but u went there before you came to kfc… Did you really walk with that amount of money??? This makes no sense… or am I watching too much Law and Order???? Just my opinion

  8. Sweetpez
    April 18, 2017 at 10:35 am

    Well I would feel unsafe leaving all that cash at a guesthouse and walking around with it. A debit card would have been the best thing. You see what’s wrong with us we like to blame the victims and not the perpetrarors.

    1. Anonymous
      April 18, 2017 at 3:24 pm

      I don’t think the victim is being blamed. All wish this robbery did not happen. However, it doesn’t make any sense to carry that much cash around – ANYWHERE in ANY COUNTRY! The team management need to think how they cater for payments to reduce the need to carry so much cash in the first place.

  9. Anonymous
    April 18, 2017 at 10:56 am

    Very unfortunate

  10. identity unknown
    April 18, 2017 at 11:10 am

    Such a sad situation…. God have a way of working things out… he will he caught and beaten just like the one from cacao Babonneau… Der ban volerre.

  11. Rastaman
    April 18, 2017 at 11:46 am

    How did she know it was a Rastaman?

    Having dreadlocks makes one a Rastaman just like sitting in your garage and saying “vroom-vroom” makes you a Toyota.

    1. garday deyeh
      April 18, 2017 at 11:11 pm

      The rastaman comment alone that burned you in the whole story?!

      smh..we really got our priorities twisted in this country.

  12. Calvin
    April 18, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    The team’s manager is quoted as saying “…because we just came in, there was no way I could put the cash in the guest house or anything – we had just landed,…”

    To be clear, street crime is despicable and there is no excuse for it.

    That said, no matter where one is in whatever country, there is NO excuse for not travelling smart, be it with a debit card or walking with a limited amount of cash, the remaining stored securely.

    The manager’s excuse of not taking a few minutes to secure the cash on arrival at the guest house is, quite simply, and not to sound trite, a gross dereliction of responsibility.

    By walking around with that amount of cash, the manager needlessly, and wrecklessly endangered the safety and security of her team.

    Any group that size is automatically going to gather attention, no matter what. Carrying $14K?

    Why didn’t the team manager simply instead put on a clown suit and hold a sign saying “Check Me”.

    1. Tetwed
      April 18, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      Calvin seriously
      Smh

      1. Anonymous
        April 18, 2017 at 12:43 pm

        YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO FREEDOM WHERE EVER THE HELL YOU ARE.

    2. Lucianman101
      April 18, 2017 at 12:28 pm

      Stop victim blaming! people like you are empowering the criminals in this country

    3. mwen men
      April 18, 2017 at 12:59 pm

      Crime is everywhere. We are advised to be cautious everywhere we travel. No one is giving perpetrators right! We can’t stop crime but we have to be cautious and responsible. I am sad that she got robbed…and upset but that was careless of her.

  13. baldhead
    April 18, 2017 at 12:23 pm

    Boy shake .anyone could walk around with a million dollars wihout anyone knowing.

  14. Anonymous
    April 18, 2017 at 12:31 pm

    Capitalism and globalization is responsible for most of the crime in the caribbean very few people control all the wealth whiles the mojority of the people suffer for example look at the amount of people who will be losing their livelihood because of a foolish decision by Chastanet

    1. Calvin
      April 18, 2017 at 12:55 pm

      It is much, much too easy to blame capitalism and globalization as being responsible for most of the crime.

      If only it was that easy to dismiss.

      The source of our crime is more deeply rooted in a tragic decline of societal morals, values, courage, fortitude and internal discipline. Our education system, once an envy, has deteriorated to a massive extent. Children are increasingly growing up in dysfunctional families, parents having shirked their responsibilities for raising their children and instead counting on the schools and the streets to raise their children.

      The 20-somethings are a lost generation, the unwilling victims of greed and sloth.

      Capitalism and globalization, if anything, provide our children’s generation with unparalleled opportunities. For example, gone are the days of when, if we were lucky, A St. Lucia producer might get a call about their product after writing a letter to a crusty merchandiser in England. Now, with the Internet, 24-7 shipping infrastructure and so on, St. Lucian products and services and our human talent can compete against other products and services on a global stage, getting hi-def, full 30 frame-per-second colour-corrected exposure from Boston to Budapest.

      Our people have the raw intellectual horsepower to rock the world — that’s not going to happen unless they are nurtured in a loving family environment, know the meaning of a hard day’s work, and have the education from primary through college.

      1. Letsaskcalvinthephilosophist
        April 20, 2017 at 1:33 pm

        OKay okay, write a book… if those big words and long winded statements were doing you any good in your life you would be offering some sort of compensation to those who were robbed in your country. But instead you come here trying to blame the poor terrorized lady. Who reading halfway through that long thing??

  15. Anonymous
    April 18, 2017 at 12:41 pm

    Good one Calvin! I agree

  16. God bless
    April 18, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Sorry .But to me this story just doesn’t add up. Besides at.Lucia is not the only country robbery does happen .with so many of you in a group nah .But I wish you and your team well .

  17. Vegetarian
    April 18, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    So the rasta was inside KFC buying chicken ….shame on you ras…

    1. #
      April 18, 2017 at 10:07 pm

      lmao

  18. Anonymous
    April 18, 2017 at 4:47 pm

    From what I know the lady had a lot of. Cash on her cuz I work at kfc an she mad a lot of orders her bill was three hundred any something dollars she say the person follow her

  19. nicole Ba
    April 18, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    it is a shame that a person gets robbed in the middle of town and no one was able to take any sort of action. what about the group itself did they witness the crime , stood there and do absolutely nothing?

  20. Conrad
    April 18, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    Let’s be reasonable. One would assume that such a small team would have to have a bank account in order to have a bank card whether debit or credit. Very often these groups are able to participate from sponsorships and their personal funds. So it makes little sense that we would expect a team of 14 and 15 year olds to have a team account as if theyre running a business. Besides I I think that this is the least that the team would have expected traveling to a friendly next door island. Rather than blame, let’s call this act for what it is. SHAMEFUL!

  21. Scarit must go!
    April 18, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    I sympathize with the victims and think that this perpetrator needs to spend the rest of his life in jail! All genuine peaceful Eastman should look for this man,cut off his locks and take him to the police!All of these islands seems to be rogue islands,with rogue leadasses and incompetent rogue police force!? This woman seems to be senseless as the island she came from!? How could one travel to represent her country with such amount of money!? Is it some of the illegal sales of diplomatic passports money!?

  22. Anonymous
    April 18, 2017 at 6:41 pm

    I am sadden by this incident and I sympathize with our visitors. I am of the view that much more could have been done by the Police in organizing a search within the Castries environment especially in areas where known criminals frequent and dispose of items that are not needed by them in Backafy, near the river, Chaussée road near Courts, the Gardens behind the buildings , behind the Anglican Church and school. BEHIND Central Station all vacant lots in Castries these are areas that the thieves will go to empty the stolen bags to take the money and leave the unwanted things. The Police could call out volunteers to help search these back alleys. Driving around never help. We need to be more innovative and willing to go the extra mile to help especially when our visitors are affected. Not just waiting to end our tour of duty and run home.

  23. Concerned Lucian
    April 18, 2017 at 6:43 pm

    That is a shame and very embarassing for St. Lucians. The police need to take back the streets! Castries is becoming a ghost town, literally. I personally feel unsafe walking there after dark.

  24. We are All one people
    April 18, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    I am a Dominican and I intend to visit St. Lucia soon, this is a sad situation but will only no way deter me from my visit. I suppose traveling with cash though it’s not safer makes you feel more secure meaning you are certain that you’ll get you things accomplished. Machines take way longer than pulling out $300 and be on your way. At times the machines don’t work or what not so I understand WHY although I don’t agree with HOW the volume of cash was carried. Crimes happen everywhere and I’m saddened it happened to my fellow citizens. Just glad no one was hurt things can be replaced never people.

  25. Anonymous
    April 18, 2017 at 9:54 pm

    NOname

    Well said bro

  26. Anonymous
    April 19, 2017 at 1:15 am

    Sad really but I don’t think it is wise to have that amount of cash in person unless you are heading to the bank to make a deposit. A lesson to be learnt from this incident

  27. ah hah
    April 19, 2017 at 10:22 am

    I had to see this on a Lucian site. This woman is lieing, police need to see if she went to Western union. She take de money. She lie alot.

  28. Dominican
    April 20, 2017 at 3:08 am

    Look at the age of those children you pPl don’t expect them to be afraid, ppl coming to visit and dts what you alll have to say, what if it ws yr team that a dominica person did that to huh, so some of u all sound happy that this happened, now I realize in this world everywhere u go have the same set of ppl, good bad and the ugly……, I am amazed at some of the comment I ready may god bless yr childrens in St lucia…so they won’t become thieves. ….(Words deleted)

    1. Hello
      April 20, 2017 at 10:47 am

      I dont think anyone is condoning the actions of the thief. However one can make a defensive comment without cursing the future of the children of persons, it makes you no better than them. Furthermore, in this current life it is sad to say, but almost no one can be trusted immediately, including the ones crying wolf, it is always a blind chance people choose to take through the goodness of their heart.

  29. Anonymous
    April 25, 2017 at 10:16 am

    We need to stop blaming and focus your energy to improving the situation NOW.

  30. Anonymous
    July 13, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    I Dont think the woman is lieing .she is traveling with 15 kids.and depend on theis stay.she needs to have enoth to spend..come on people lest not be judgemental. do not hang the woman..why dont that rastaman.go and sell some coconut by the market.stop making excuses for that thief.the woman has a right to do as she please. Be real with all these negative coment..come on.what hat gotton into lucians head.that Should get that Sucker and put him in a boat take him out deep deep deep into the and push him abroad. The woman was roob out of her belonging and still she is the one to be blame…nonsense

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