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Tragic Waters: The Disturbing Incident at Charlotte Amalie

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The serene dusk at Charlotte Amalie waterfront in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, belies a recent tragic event

Editorial Note: We approach the reporting of this deeply troubling incident with sensitivity and respect for the affected. This narrative involves the loss of a young life, a subject matter that may be distressing. Our compassionate thoughts are with everyone touched by this sorrowful occurrence.

On a recent Tuesday, Anyah Smith stood before the court for the first time, facing charges related to her daughter’s death, an event that has cast a somber shadow over the community. The court received documents detailing the harrowing events leading up to the tragic loss of a nine-year-old girl, believed to have drowned under distressing circumstances as outlined by the police investigation.

The sequence of events began in the early hours of a Saturday when Ms. Smith’s mother, concerned for her granddaughter’s well-being, contacted emergency services. She requested a welfare check at the Agnes Fancy residence, citing fears of her daughter’s mental state. Responding officers arrived to a scene of disarray, with personal belongings scattered outside the home. A witness reported seeing Ms. Smith and her daughter departing moments before the 911 call, noting Ms. Smith’s distinct attire and the unsettling sight of her carrying a concrete block on her head.

Despite immediate efforts, law enforcement initially failed to locate Ms. Smith and her daughter. The break came when friends found Ms. Smith near a local mall, her daughter in a tragic state. Despite desperate resuscitation attempts, it was too late. Witnesses reported distressing signs of drowning.

Ms. Smith’s subsequent interactions with police, including her appearance in a wet dress and without shoes, added to the gravity of the situation. Investigators pieced together the night’s events through surveillance footage, showing the mother and daughter near the waterfront under the cloak of night, with objects that would later be linked to the heartrending outcome.

Divers discovered a concrete block tethered with a white electric cord, a haunting echo of the surveillance images. The discovery of the girl’s school identification card in the water added a personal note to the investigation, underscoring the tragic loss of life.

The background to this event is complex, with Ms. Smith reportedly sending distressing messages to her sister, indicating a troubled state of mind. Her charges include murder and endangerment, highlighting the seriousness of the situation.

As Ms. Smith awaits further legal proceedings, with her next court appearance scheduled for April 5, the community is left to grapple with the enormity of this tragedy. This incident serves as a stark reminder of the fragility of life and the deep impact of mental health crises on families and communities. Our heartfelt condolences go out to all who are mourning this unimaginable loss.

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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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Crime

Six Arrests Made in St. Thomas Drug Trafficking Crackdown

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ST. THOMAS — A targeted joint operation by the Virgin Islands Police Department, alongside the Drug Enforcement Agency and the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force, resulted in the arrest of six men accused of drug-related crimes in the Red Hook area, a noted hub for illegal narcotics activity.

Throughout February, these coordinated efforts focused on dismantling drug trafficking networks, culminating in several key arrests:

  • N’Kel Morton, 30, was taken into custody at Red Hook Plaza on March 8, 2024, facing charges of cocaine possession with intent to distribute.
  • On March 7, 2024, Jaamal Bell, 42, was arrested at American Yacht Harbor, charged with intent to distribute narcotics.
  • Peter Francis Jr., 33, encountered the same fate at the same location, on identical charges.
  • Anwar Lockhart, 40, was arrested on March 15, 2024, on Cassi Hill for cocaine distribution.
  • Niah Henry, 35, was apprehended on March 16, 2024, at Red Hook Plaza, with charges similar to Morton’s.
  • Kenson Plasimond, 43, was arrested on March 7, 2024, at Tutu Park Mall, also charged with possession with intent to distribute.

These arrests signify a continued commitment by local and federal law enforcement to curb the flow of illegal drugs in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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