New York, NY
Months after the F.B.I. toxicology results were expected for what was deemed suspicious tourist deaths in the Dominican Republic, major news sources reported on October 18-19, 2019 that the results are final. CNN, ABC, the New York Times along with most major news outlets reported that the F.B.I. has concluded that the Dominican Republic assertion that the deaths of three tourists were from natural causes are correct.
The released F.B.I. report focused on the deaths of Miranda Schaupp-Werner, 41, from Pennsylvania, along with Edward Nathaniel Holmes, 63, and Cynthia Ann Day, 49, a couple from Maryland. Ms. Schaupp-Werner was found dead on May 25, 2019 at the Luxury Bahia Principe Bouganville hotel. Mr. Holmes and Ms. Day were found dead in their hotel room at the Grand Bahia Principe La Romana Resort in San Pedro de Macori on May 30,2019.
The F.B.I. report addressed these three cases, saying that their tests indicated that the deaths were consistent with the reports by Dominican Republic authorities and that there were no indications of methanol poisoning. In a quote published in the New York Times on October 18, 2019, the lawyer for the Maryland couple, Steven Bullock is quoted as saying, “You had a couple that died of the same ailment at the same time, and they want to say that it’s natural causes,….. I think there’s something for us to continue to look into.” The family of Miranda Schaupp-Werner referred questions by the New York Times to their attorney who could not be reached.
When it was first announced that the F.B.I. would be assisting in the investigation into suspicious tourists’ deaths in the Dominican Republic, most news outlets reported that the scope of the investigation would include analyzing alcohol samples from at least one minibar at the popular Bahia Príncipe resort in the Dominican Republic. No results of alcohol samples were addressed in the recently released F.B.I. report which keyed in on only three of the over 9 deaths that were deemed suspicious by families and press reports.
At the height of the media blitz in mid-June 2019 concerning the Dominican Republic deaths, Senator Chuck Schumer called for the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Agency (ATF) as well as the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to assist the Dominican Republic in the investigation. No reports were issued by either agency.
On June 22, 2019 after Sen. Schumer called for the ATF and CDC to join the F.B.I. in the investigation, the Hard Rock resort in the Dominican Republic announced that they were removing their in-room mini-bars. The Hard Rock resort was the sight of two suspicious deaths, David Harrison and Robert Bell Wallace. Neither of these deaths were addressed by the recently released F.B.I. report.
In earlier reports about the deaths of Mr. Harrison and Mr. Bell, families for both told reporters that they either believed or had witnessed that the two victims had drinks from the in-room mini bars at the Hard Rock.
The F.B.I. are recognized experts in laboratory testing and their diligence is unquestionable. However, in an interview with Dr. Knut Erik Hovda, a Consultant (Clinical Toxicology), MD, PhD at The Norwegian CBRNE Centre of Medicine and a first responder to methanol outbreaks for Doctors without Borders, he told SafeProof.org, “it is nearly impossible to determine methanol in an embalmed body.”
The released F.B.I. report fails to address the deaths of other tourists in the Dominican Republic as well as any indication that they tested the alcohol on the properties.
SafeProof.org has operated an International tip line for fake, counterfeit and tainted alcohol. Since the beginning of the tip line and as recently as last week, tourists and residents have reported that they question the authenticity of the alcohol served in Dominican Republic restaurants, bars, clubs, hotels and all-inclusive resorts. Readers are again reminded to respond to this and any SafeProof.org report through the comment section or by contacting the Tip Line.
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