Thursday, March 29


Taken from A.M. Costa Rica on-line newspaper:
Jacó robbery/assault victim DOES want to go public

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A Jacó woman who survived a brutal robbery said Wednesday she wants her case to be public and is critical of how law enforcement handled the crime.

Spokespersons for both the Judicial Investigating Organization and the Fuerza Pública said Tuesday they could not provide much information to reporters because the woman did not want publicity of the crime. A.M. Costa Rica reported that in a news story.

The law enforcement officials made these comments at about the same time that the woman, Robyn Wright, was in a meeting with investigators and about 40 neighbors at a restaurant on her Calle Vieja a Punta Leona.

Ms. Wright, a pensionada, said that the Judicial Investigating Organization, known as the OIJ, concluded that she wanted to drop the case because she was unable to travel from her home to Puntarenas to meet with a forensic examiner.

Ms. Wright and her boyfriend, Henry Kantrowitz, have been the victims of three robberies at their home recently. The third, the most serious, took place early March 20 when Kantrowitz was out of the country and Ms Wright was home alone. Two men broke into the home, beat her, strangled her and sexually assaulted her when they thought she was near death.

She said the men checked her pulse and shined a light in her eyes in an attempt to verify she was dead. Then the men sacked the house and took electronic equipment and the third computer the couple has lost to criminals, said Ms. Wright.

"I went to the clinic in town who called OIJ," she said. "OIJ came to the clinic and talked with me. Which is more than the Tarcoles police did when they arrived at my home at 6 a.m. the same day of the assault. They only asked someone what my name was (and spelled that wrong) and the two of them left on their little moped. That was the extent of their investigation. They never spoke one word to me."

Ms. Wright, 57, is not fluent in Spanish, and investigators in Jacó had to enlist the aid of a bilingual real estate agent to translate, she said.

A neighbor says he has important evidence about Robyn Wright after the attack the crime, and this information has been relayed to investigators but they have not contacted the man, she said. Ms. Wright also may be able to identify one of the men whom she described as being short.

Ms Wright says the Jacó area is in the middle of a crime wave and has heard from investigators that the incidence of criminality there is the highest in the country. She now is on a campaign to make her crime well-known. She even has visited the local chamber of commerce to show workers there her bruised and battered face.

Law enforcement officers were embarrassed March 21 when four robbers broke into the Rohrmoser home of Ricardo Toledo, a former presidential candidate. They killed a maid and a neighbor and broke the arm of Toledo's wife in three places.

In the week that followed, there have been a number of proposals to counter the growing crime problem. Fernando Berrocal, the security minister, wants to eliminate the compartmentalizing of the various police forces. Fuerza Pública officers are barred from doing investigations, which probably is why the local police merely took down Ms. Wright's name. Berrocal also wants more men and more resources.

Others have called for toughening the laws, denying criminals lawyers duing the initial interview and expanded wiretapping.

The courts are overwhelmed by cases, and only the most visible receive professional treatment.

Note to Yo-Yo readers: I don't know Robyn or Henry well but I consider them to be my friends. Robyn is a beautiful person with a sincere, compassionate heart. I usually see the two of them at charity events. They are both "givers" and for something like this to happen to her... it is truly horrific.

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