This is not a funny post, not in the least. This is the story of a crime that happened a week ago, outside of Jaco, down on the coast. I don’t know Henry, but I have exchanged emails with him and he is a regular contributor on the Costa Rica Living Group board.
I offered to print the story, not to scare you away, but because, in today’s A.M. Costa Rica, the reporter told a completely different, and decidedly unsympathetic, tale. I’m mystified as to why. I will meet Henry and Robyn soon. And I have a post about crime in Costa Rica percolating. Definitely more to follow on this topic.
Here is the basic scenario to our story.
On March 2nd two people broke into our house. I had gone to the beach for two hours and my girlfriend Robyn was back in Calif. They obviously had been watching our property for some time before the break-in. We live on six acres without any immediate neighbors.
They pried open the bars with a 2×4. They stole our laptop which was visible and several other items. I always put my laptop in our safe when we go anywhere. Unfortunately, this day I forgot. The following day my dog was missing. I called O.I.J. [Organismo de Investigación Judicial], the day of the robbery and they came down and took fingerprints and I filed a report with them.
Five days later, I was down by the creek in the front of our property, talking with the man who installed our well. We started up to the house. As we approached the house, I noticed some pieces of sausage. I picked it up and sure enough it had white powder (poison) on them. I went over to the bodega to get something for my friend and found the latch broken by a shovel of mine next to the bodega.
They stole my $500 weed-eater and all of my tools. This all occurred with me only 60 meters from the house. One of them was a lookout while the other broke in. Again O.I.J. was called and they came down to investigate.
I left for the states on March 16th for 10 days. On March 18th, Robyn, my girlfriend, heard some noise that night behind the house. She turned on lights inside, looked outside, but could see nothing and just thought it was probably raccoons.
On March 20th at 4:00 a.m. robbers came screaming into the bedroom. Robyn stood up and ran toward them. She pushed the first man (very small and thin). They then began to beat her with a bat or stick, hard to say because it was completely dark. They then tied her up and began to strangle her. They kept feeling her neck for a pulse. They then thought she was dead and sexually assaulted her.
After that they again stole, for the third time our laptop and other things in the bedroom. They then exited the bedroom and closed the door. They had unscrewed the screws to the bars of the kitchen and had literally taken off the complete bars and placed them about thirty feet away by our small storage building.
Robyn waited about fifteen minutes and peeked into the living room to see if anyone was there. Our house is only a one bedroom and 610 sq. ft. When she thought they were gone she went outside went to the car and drove over to the nearest neighbor about 250 meters away. She called her brother and wife who live about ten minutes from us. They came over and went back to the scene of the crime with Robyn. They called the local police. The police arrived, asked Robyn’s brother her name. They wrote it down, misspelled, and then said good bye. Very professional, not one other question was asked.
Robyn, her brother and wife then went to the local clinic in Jaco and she was treated for contusions and abrasions. O.I.J. arrived at the clinic and told her to come to the O.I.J. office and that they would have a forensic examiner to review her. Robyn then went to the O.I.J. office to file her report and meet with the forensic examiner, but he wasn’t there.
She did file a report on what happened. She then went to the pharmacy for pain medication and back to the house as O.I.J. met them there to look through the house for fingerprints. I flew back the next day. The following days we went and visited the office of the Chamber of Commerce to let them know and see first hand what had happened. We also went around to many residents of the area to let them know about this problem also.
Robyn and I are willing to cooperate with anyone to get to the bottom of this heinous crime.
Please tell X he should explore meditation in regards to his “high” BP. This is nothing more than sitting or in the begining lying down and concentrating on his breath. Start with maybe 5 -10 minutes a day, breathing through the nose follwing it in then out. As thoughts enter the mind just watch them let them be then send them on there way. A great book on this stress reduction method is called ‘Full catstrphe living’ by Jon Kabbat Zinn, you may enjoy this as well! No new age/religous stuff just stress reduction techniques. He runs the Stress reduction clinic at Mass. General hospital…google him.
Thank you! I will get the book – Lately it seems I’ve been meeting some cool people who meditate. I’d like to try it. Good you point out it’s not new agey – X would hate that. Which is so funny when he will latch right onto chocolate!!!
Do you consider violent crime and drug use increasing over the last few years? Are expats becoming targets of violent crime? Are violent home invasions on the increase? We are seriously considering retiring in CR but are becoming concerned about some of the stories we are reading.
Hi George and Doris, I don’t think violent crime against expats is on the upswing, nor do I think violent home invasions are in particular. I loved living there, I did live in a fortress with a monitored alarm system and we were home all day everyday since we worked at home. Home invaders would leave us alone — we were too hard to rob. That’s the best way to protect yourself!
Petty crime and breaking and entering are a fact of life in Costa Rica, there is just no way around it. You have to protect yourself the best you can with all the resources at your disposal. If you are going to live there part-time, a condo or secure gated community might be best. There are lots of options.
To me, dealing with making my home secure was an ok price to pay to live in such a beautiful place. If I had felt that my life was in danger, I would not have lived there.