Stop murders of women
By ALEXANDER BRUZUAL Monday, August 20 2012
The mothers and daughters of this nation seem to be at risk, as statistics kept by Newsday have revealed that for the year, so far, at least 28 women have been murdered.
Yesterday, Leela Deonarinesingh was found bludgeoned to death at her Barrackpore home, a day after 30-year-old Ayanna Williams was killed in her bed after being shot 13 times by unknown assailants at Pelican Extension, Morvant.
Police reported that Williams was asleep with her common-law husband, Michael Bournes, when at about 3.45 am, on Saturday, a gunman removed louvre panes from a window and entered the bedroom where the couple slept. The gunman then began firing at the sleeping couple, striking Williams 13 times, while Bournes was shot in his left leg and both arms. Williams died on the spot, while Bournes, 30, was rushed to the Port-of-Spain General Hospital where he was warded in serious but stable condition.
Just two days prior, on Thursday night, 24-year-old Gisselle Meloney was chopped to death at her home on Manic Street, Guaico, Sangre Grande, allegedly by her ex-boyfriend, a policeman. The 35-year-old suspect has since been detained.
Last Monday, Julie Parris, 43, was stabbed to death by her husband in Rio Claro during an argument over their son. A day later, Patrick Parris took his own life and was found hanging from a tree at the back of his home. Patrick also chopped his son, Brian, when he tried to defend his mother. Brian Parris’ pregnant girlfriend, Lucy Faria, was also chopped in the attack.
The alarming trend seemed to be that most of these killings were committed at the hands of relatives, ex-lovers, and current partners — persons known to the deceased women.
In total 11 women have been stabbed to death, while six have been beaten to death. Seven more women have also been killed by gunshot injuries, while two more were strangled. In a tragic case, two sisters had their throats slit by intruders before their bodies were burnt along with the rest of their home.
Speaking to Newsday, yesterday, former Assistant Commissioner of Police, and current manager of the Victim and Witness Support Unit of the TT Police Service, Margaret Sampson-Browne, expressed her sorrow that women were being so viciously murdered in their own homes. “Over the course of a week, we had three women being killed in their own homes, and out of those incidents, two of them were at the hands of persons who were known to these women. Given what has been occurring it appears as though women are no longer safe in their own households,” she said.
This is clearly illustrated with the deaths of Giselle Meloney and Julie Parris.
In both instances, these women were reportedly killed by persons with whom they once had intimate relationships.
“Your home is supposed to be a place where you can find peace, come from a day of work and be happy with loved ones surrounding you. But it appears that your home is now becoming more like a prison or a jungle because you are being attacked, in a vicious way. Meloney was chopped to death, and Williams was shot to death, both in their home. It is sad to see that while most of us have spent a week celebrating the so many victories (Olympics), and preparing to celebrate 50 years of Independence, that we still have the blood of our mothers and daughters being spilt in this country,” Sampson-Browne noted.
She suggested the only way this cycle of violence against women could stop, is if all the relevant Government agencies, and persons who know they are in abusive relationships got more serious, and more proactive in their approach to the issue of violence against women and children.
“There are a lot of women and children who are suffering at the hands of people who love them, and this cannot be allowed to continue. But the thing is, sometimes these women believe that if they approach the authorities, they will not get the kind of help or service they believe they should get. So they rather remain silent, stay quiet and try to deal with the situation in their own way, or pray the problem will magically disappear. But this doesn’t always work, and you can clearly see the very violent and catastrophic results,” she said.
“So our State agencies need to become more proactive, and start reaching out to these victims whether it is through the media, or through their own community development projects, and show these women that the State is very serious about their well-being and that if they do come forward, they will be treated properly, and protected if they need to be. This in turn will hopefully inspire these victims to actually come forward, and help us end this violence.”
Amanda Pamponette, 17, chopped to death in Valencia on February 3
Parbatee Thomas, 63, died as a result of asphyxia and her body found in Macoya on February 3
Sparkle Williams, 23, was stabbed to death in San Juan on February 4
Kamla Ramnarine, 68, was beaten to death in Princes Town on February 18
Amoy Lewis, 37, found dead with chop wounds about her body on Manzanilla Beach on March 8
Melissa McDonald, 24, found in Arima with chop wounds on April 10
Indra Gangabissoon, 76, severely beaten on April 12, 2012 and later died at PoSGH on April 14.
Keshelle Aleong, 22, shot and killed in Laventille on April 23.
Nikita Ramischand, 18, stabbed to death in Maracas/St Joseph on April 25.
Eldica Cudjoe, 90, chopped in Belmont on May 10, and died at PosGH on May 11.
Batia Ramsumair, 70, beaten to death in Barrackpore on May 13.
Wendy Arjoon, 33, stabbed to death in Penal on May 19.
Unidentified woman shot and killed in Laventille on May 19.
Ann David, 44, found dead in Manzanilla with chop wounds on June 1.
Vinecia John, 19, shot and killed in Laventille on June 3
Nefita Awai, 26, shot and killed in Maracas on June 4
Sharmine Francois, 33, shot and killed in Princes Town on June 9
Gwendolyn Griffith, 35, throat slit and body burnt in Arima on June 18
Salisha Griffith, 28, throat slit and body burnt in Arima on June 18
Anuradha Parey, 23, beaten to death in Sangre Grande on July 8
Myrna Sahibram, 68, beaten to death in Rousillac on July 9
Wu Xiu Hua, 60, shot dead in Cunupia on July 12
Ann Ivy Corrion aka Tanty Ivy, 89, beaten to death in Siparia on July 14
Donawattie Jadoonanan, 56, strangled in Debe on August 5
Dianne Lewis, 52, stabbed in Diego Martin on August 5, died at PoSGH on August 9
Julie Parris, 43, stabbed to death in Rio Claro on August 13
Giselle Maloney, 24, chopped to death in Sangre Grande on August 16
Ayanna Williams, 30, shot to death in Morvant on August 18
Leela Deonarinesingh, 64, bludgeoned to death in Barrackpore sometime between August 18 and 19