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May 21, 2014
Star News


9-Y-0 JAMAICAN BRUTALLY ATTACKED ABROAD - Man wanted girl and parents to leave his country
Leighton Levy, STAR Writer

A nine-year-old Jamaican girl living in St Maarten was last Thursday viciously beaten by a man who reports said is intent on seeing her and her family leave the island and return to Jamaica.

The girl, Shudeska Brooks, is recovering at the St Maarten Medical Centre having suffered bruises to her body and was, at one point, vomiting blood. She was scheduled to be released from hospital on Monday, police said.

Reports emerging from St Maarten said the girl's attacker, who is in police custody, tied a length of rope around the girl's neck, beat her in the face and dragged her along Cherry Nut Road in the community of South Reward. The child is said to have been so traumatised by the incident, she was barely able to speak.

severe ill-treatment

Inspector Ricardo Henson said the man, identified only as A.P., is charged with severe ill-treatment, a charge that could be elevated to attempted murder or attempted manslaughter depending on the findings of an ongoing investigation. However, there are challenges in that regard.

"The man is believed to be mentally challenged so the Public Prosecutor's Office is conducting an investigation, which will include a mental evaluation of the suspect," the cop said.

Henson revealed that there has been much outcry from the community that wants action to be taken against the girl's attacker.

The child's father, Fitz Sinclair, revealed that the attack was not initiated by anything his daughter did. "She was on her way to school when she was attacked by this guy, who put a rope around her neck and beat her on the face. Her face was really, really bad," he said. "As a result of that she was taken to the medical centre. When I got to the medical centre she said, 'daddy'. That's all she could say because she was so traumatised and frightened."

He said a specialist checked one of the child's eyes to see if there was any damage. Fortunately, there wasn't. He said the wounds on her face required stitches. He believes though that she may have suffered some internal damage. "While she was there (at the hospital) she started vomiting, and you could see the blood in the vomit," he said. The nurses had her do a scan to see if there was any internal damage, but later told him she would have to do another.

admitted to hospital

It was then that they admitted her to the hospital, he said.

Further recalling the incident, Sinclair said the alleged attacker, who is a neighbour, after beating his daughter, lifted her up and threw her over a fence into his yard. The child's mother, on hearing the commotion, went and rescued her daughter. Sinclair said when the attacker saw the child's mother, he reportedly said, "You too? Where you all come from? You sure you have papers for the island? You better go back where you come from."

Sinclair said the man has attacked his family before. He said the man had broken his windows in his house on several occasions and this latest attack, he feels is a continuation of efforts aimed at forcing him and his family to return to Jamaica.

Henson said the state is to appoint a social worker to ensure that Brooks gets the required treatment that will allow her to make a full recovery from the traumatic incident.

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