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Thanks to those who assisted me after violent attack



Editor: Please permit me, through your Letters to the Editor column, to express my gratitude and appreciation to numerous people in Bequia and St. Vincent.

My name is Donncha (pronounced Donnaka) O’Fionnalaigh. I first came to St. Vincent and the Grenadines in early 1990 to work as the Skills Training Instructor at the Glebe Skills Training Centre in Barrouallie, where I taught for over 2 years. During my time teaching, I met and married a woman from Barrouallie. I have been a proud Vincentian citizen for the past 16 years.{{more}} In 2002 I bought a house in Bequia.

In the early morning of Thursday, 13th December 2007, a thief entered my home. I awoke at 3:30am and realized that someone was in my house. After shouting at the thief to get out of my house, he threatened to kill me. The thief then attacked me in the dark. I was slashed twice, stabbed once, kicked and punched, and the thief bit me twice. Fearing for my life, I grabbed a knife and fought back, which resulted in the thief being very seriously injured. The thief was brought to hospital, and a week later released into police custody.

In the thief’s clothes the police found 86 rocks of cocaine and a quantity of marijuana. The thief pleaded guilty to possession of marijuana, guilty to possession of cocaine, and guilty to aggravated burglary before the Serious Offences Court and was sentenced to 1 year.

I would like to thank the hundreds of decent, honest, hardworking people in Bequia and St. Vincent who have made it their business to come by my home, stop me in the street, or phone me, to wish me well and to congratulate me on standing up against this criminal. I have come to realize that there is a huge silent majority of Vincentians who are sick and tired of these repeat offenders, and the crimes they commit against their fellow citizens and visitors to our shores.

In particular I would like to thank and pay tribute to my good neighbours and friends who helped and supported me in the hours and days after this incident.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force, and in particular Corporal Lewis and Corporal Compton, and all the officers based in Bequia, for their assistance, help, support and advice that they offered.

I also would like to thank the Doctor and Nursing staff at Bequia hospital for the prompt examination and treatment of my injuries, when I attended the hospital following the attack on me at my home.

Thank you again to everyone who contacted me with their support. Congratulations and good wishes.

Donncha O’Fionnalaigh