ANOTHER AMERICAN MURDERED AND SEXUALLY ASSAULTED IN PARADISE …
39 year old Anne Swaney, an ABC producer for abc7chicago.com in Chicago, was murdered and believed to be sexually assaulted while vacationing in Belize. Swaney had gone missing on Thursday morning after doing yoga near the Mopan River nearby the resort. Her body was found Friday morning in a river near the horse farm in western Belize where she was staying, she was resorted to be wearing only a bra. According to accounts, she had bruises on her neck and lacerations on her head suggesting she fought back and she had been strangled.
This further points out that you just can’t take your safety for granted on Caribbean Island paradises. The police best be questioning everyone involved with the resort, not like Aruba. Belize is one of those hot spots that everyone wants to go to, maybe we should rethink that.
An ABC producer was killed while vacationing in Belize this week.
Executive producer of online operations, Anne Swaney, 39, arrived last Saturday to Nabatunich Resort, Benque Viejo, according to ABC.
Swaney was allegedly sexually assaulted before being killed after doing yoga on Thursday morning near the Mopan River nearby the resort.
A tour guide found Sawney’s yoga mat another items near the river but he didn’t see her and alerted the authorities.
Dogs tracked her scent on Thursday night but she was not found until the next morning.
Benque Viejo Police Superintendent Daniel Arzu said that Swaney’s injured corpse was found floating on the river. She was wearing just a bra.
Swaney traveled alone to Nabitunich, a farm in the Cayo District of western Belize, the family member said. She had been there before and was friendly with the owner of the farm, which offers tours on horseback.
She planned to participate in a group horseback riding expedition on Thursday, Benque Viejo Police Superintendent Daniel Arzu told WLS. When organizers came up short one horse, she volunteered to stay behind and went to do her yoga practice at the Mopan River.
Her family was not surprised that Swaney gave up her tour for someone else.
“Anne would do anything for anyone. She was always the first to volunteer to take on a tough job. She just did the right thing in situations,” the family member told CNN.
When the tour returned they found her personal effects on the deck, Arzu said.
“This looked suspicious, so they went to her cabin and she wasn’t there. They told the owner who called the police. The police came with their canine unit and the scent led them along the river but due to the darkness the search was called off for the night before finding her,” Arzu said.
Friday morning, Police found her body face down in the river with bruises on her neck and lacerations on her head, Arzu said.
“Because it is on the fringes of our border with our neighbor in Guatemala it also provides another element that the police have to investigate. Where if the perpetrator came across the border, they will have a difficult time they will have to liaise with their counterparts in Guatemala,” said Daniel Ortiz, NEWSBELIZE.
There is not a nationwide tourist advisory in effect for Belize. However, tourists are told to exercise a high degree of caution due to an increasing rate of violent crime throughout the country. In that specific “Cayo District,” armed robberies occasionally occur near the western border with Guatemala, especially near Caracol to the south.
Police say criminal activity, including armed robbery, mugging and sexual assault, is a significant problem throughout Belize. Robberies and assaults have been reported in resort areas. There has been a noted increase in violent crime targeting tourists since the end of 2013. Criminals often operate in groups and target persons traveling alone.
Cases of sexual assault against female travelers have also be been reported in that district.
Drug-related crimes are also on the uptick. The transit of drugs, particularly cocaine and precursor chemicals for methamphetamine, has risen. Belize was included on the FY12, 13 and 14 U.S. Majors List of illegal narcotic producing and/or transit countries.
In January 2014, two American citizens were kidnapped at gunpoint from a resort area near the western border with Guatemala.
A Canadian filmmaker was killed in January 2015 to the south of the district.
In May 2015, two American men were murdered in a suspected drug-related armed robbery. An 18-year old suspect was charged.