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St. Thomas Traffic Stop Uncovers Cocaine and Marijuana due to Tinted Windshield

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ST. THOMAS — An ordinary traffic check on Friday afternoon culminated in felony drug accusations against Maulique Caines. Special Operations Bureau personnel, while conducting vehicular checks around 5:30 p.m. on Alton Adams Drive, adjacent to the Legislature bus stop, observed a grey Toyota 4Runner with an overly dark windshield tint traveling westward. The officer on duty promptly signaled the driver to halt.

As the vehicle stopped, a distinctive aroma of marijuana emanated, prompting officers to inquire. Caines confessed to having consumed marijuana earlier that day. Displaying initial reluctance to step out, he eventually heeded the officers’ request upon a subsequent ask. His attempt to reach back inside the vehicle during a frisk raised officers’ concerns.

The vehicle’s ensuing inspection revealed a clear plastic bag nestled in the center console, containing a substance resembling white crystalline rocks. Laboratory evaluations affirmed the substance to be cocaine, weighing in at roughly 7 grams. Furthermore, the back seat hid multiple packets of marijuana-infused confectionaries. Meanwhile, the front passenger seat held a black rucksack housing approximately 21 grams of a substance, later identified as marijuana. Alongside, officers discovered an unused syringe and two mystery vials sheathed in white tissue.

Caines received a citation due to the windshield’s tint and is now facing a slew of charges. These include intentions of narcotics distribution, marijuana distribution, and having drug-related apparatus. A notable aspect of his apprehension was its proximity to a place of worship, which adds an extra charge for having illicit drugs with distributive intent within 1,000 feet of a church.

During a subsequent Monday court session, Magistrate Simone VanHolten-Turnbull recognized ample evidence to sustain two charges—controlled substance distribution/possession and possession of medical syringes or related equipment. Pending trial, Caines is set for release once he deposits 10% of his $15,000 bail. He’s mandated to liaise with the probation department biweekly via phone, with movement constraints to the St. Thomas/St. John region. Additionally, he must relinquish his driving license and apprise the court of his residential details.

The next hearing for Maulique Caines is calendared for October 6.

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Crime

Violent Robbery at Starz Hotel in St. Thomas Leaves Man Injured

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A violent encounter unfolded at Starz Hotel in the Contant area of St. Thomas, where an armed robbery took place in the early hours of Saturday. Local authorities were summoned to the location around 2:48 a.m. on April 13, following reports of the distressing event.

The V.I. Police Department reported that upon arrival, they learned from the victim that two assailants, described as black males, had exited a vehicle and confronted him. The robbers, armed and aggressive, knocked the man to the ground and struck his head with a gun. They proceeded to steal his chain, rummage through his pockets, and take his wallet before escaping in an SUV heading east.

Emergency responders transported the victim to Schneider Regional Medical Center. He received treatment for multiple injuries, which included a head contusion, chest bruising, lacerations inside his mouth, and damage to his left palm.

The VIPD’s Criminal Investigation Bureau is actively pursuing leads in this case. They urge anyone with information related to this crime to contact them at 340-774-2211 ext. 5574, dial 911 for immediate assistance, or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers V.I.

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Crime

Former Deputy Park Superintendent of St. Croix Sentenced for Property Conversion and Fraud

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ST. CROIX, VI – Gregory Camacho, 43, previously Deputy Park Superintendent for the National Park Service in St. Croix, received a sentence of nine months of home detention and four years of probation for unlawfully converting property, according to U.S. Attorney for the USVI, Delia L. Smith. The sentencing was handed down by District Judge Wilma A. Lewis on Thursday.

In addition to home detention and probation, Judge Lewis imposed a $6,000 fine and a special assessment of $75 on Camacho. He was also ordered to pay restitution amounting to $29,502.20 to the National Park Service.

According to court filings, Camacho, during his tenure as acting park superintendent from June 2019 to August 2020, occupied two housing units owned by the National Park Service without fulfilling rental payments, causing a loss of $14,192.10. In another instance in July 2019, Camacho deceitfully claimed relocation expenses for his family’s move from Titusville, FL, to St. Croix, even though he moved alone. This action led to unjust reimbursements totaling $13,387.50.

Furthermore, between October 2018 and September 2019, Camacho was found to have submitted overlapping travel vouchers for the same trips from his primary duty station, resulting in an additional $1,922.50 in improper gains.

These findings were brought to light through an investigation by the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of the Interior, with the case prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daniel H. Huston.

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Crime

Daylight Assault in St. Thomas Leaves Man Injured

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A distressing incident unfolded on St. Thomas when a man suffered injuries in a daylight assault in Simmonds Alley, according to a statement from the V.I. Police Department. The attack occurred on Wednesday around 12:15 p.m.

Authorities were alerted to the situation when the 911 Emergency Call Center received a call about a man found bleeding from the neck near the Jala Jala establishment on Kronprindsens Gade. Responding officers discovered the victim with a severe laceration on the left side of his neck, believed to be the result of the assault.

Despite the seriousness of his injuries, the victim refrained from providing a statement to law enforcement at the scene. He was quickly transported to Schneider Regional Medical Center for medical attention.

The VIPD’s Criminal Investigation Bureau has taken charge of the investigation and is urging the public to assist by providing any relevant information. Individuals can contact the CIB at (340) 774-2211 or call 911. For those preferring to stay anonymous, tips can be submitted to Crime Stoppers USVI by calling 1-800-222-8477 or online.

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