The fall-out from last Saturday’s robbery of 18 Royal Caribbean and Disney cruise passengers on the Segway Tour at "Earth Village" continues. The Tribune, Bahama Journal, and Nassau Guardian newspapers have reported daily on the crime spree in the Bahamas and the inability of the government to do anything about it.
Fort Lauderdale’s Sun Sentinel newspapers also recently reported on the cruise crime in an article entitled "Bahamas Security to be Beefed Up After U.S. Cruise Ship Passengers Robbed."
A Terrifying Near Death Experience
The cruise lines’ PR departments initially released statements claiming that no one was injured.
Yet, recent interviews of cruise passengers reveal that some of the passengers were kicked, pushed, hit, and terrorized.
A Royal Caribbean passenger reported being kicked by one of the robbers who discharged his shotgun as she laid on the ground. The passenger was terrified that she would be murdered. In an article in the Nassau Guardian entitled "Visitor from Ireland Tells of Ordeal with Gunman," she described one of the robbers instructing her:
"Get your head down bitch’ and he fired off a shot, which was just beside me. It hit the ground just beside me."
Another passenger from a cruise ship provides a graphic first hand account of the robbery in an article on AOL Travel entitled: " Danger In Paradise: I was Robbed at Gunpoint in the Bahamas." She indicates that the Bahamian police falsely told her after she was robbed that " this never happens here. Never."
Connection to Last Month’s Crime?
The Bahama Journal’s article "Tourist Robberies May Be Linked," suggests that there may be a connection between this crime and the robbery of 11 cruise passengers at the "Queen’s Staircase" in downtown Nassau. If you have not heard of this prior crime, its because no one in the U.S. reported on it and the cruise lines kept it a secret from their own guests.
We reported about this robbery last month and commented that most cruise lines are aware of crime problems in the ports which they choose to disembark their passengers, but they don’t warn passengers in order to maximize excursion sales.
The Tribune indicates that a representative of Bahamas Association for Social Health (BASH), Mr. Terry Miller (below, left) , suggests that the latest robbery may have been an "inside job," although he declined to elaborate. It is obviously suspicious that these two robbers would know exactly where and when to go in a 160 acre preserve to rob two groups of cruise passengers.
"Chaotic Crime Nightmare"
A popular Baptist preacher in the Bahamas, Bishop Simeon Hall (right), was interviewed about the crime problem and the recent attack on the cruise tourists. He is quoted in the Tribune newspaper as referring to the "current crime nightmare" in the Bahamas as well as the "anarchy and chaos" of the Bahamian society.
He criticizes the inability of the government to focus on issues of protecting the local citizens and tourists against crime. Bishop Hall proposes a crime coalition to address the problem.
Serious Crime Up & The Police Release A Suspect
Today’s Nassau Guardian reports that robberies in the Bahamas have increased 25% since last year. The Bahamian police are quoted as stating that there has been an increase in violent crimes like armed robbery and murder since July 1st of this year. Meanwhile, the newspaper indicates that the police released a suspect arrested in the "Segway" cruise excursion because of "insufficient evidence." Police are not questioning any other suspects, the newspaper reports.
A 50% Cruise Discount & A Complimentary Excursion Tour?
The Tribune quotes Bahamas government official Mr. Miller as saying that "he would be willing to offer a complementary tour of the site to the victims." And the popular cruise community Cruise Critic indicates that Royal Caribbean thinks its reasonable to "compensate" the victimized passengers with just a 50% off-your-next-cruise-with-us coupon.
The trend of violent cruise crimes continue. Yet, the cruise lines remain clueless.
Who on earth would want to pay even 50% of the cruise fare to return to Nassau and visit the tour where you were robbed by shotgun?
Newspaper The Tribune, Nassau
Bishop Hall photograph New Covenant Baptist Church
Terry Miller photograph The Tribune, Nassau