Teenage Cruise Passenger Killed in Caribbean Gang Shootout

Posted Jul 13th 2010 12:45 PMUpdated Jul 14th 2010 01:01 AM


A 14-year-old cruise ship passenger was killed Monday in the crossfire of a gang gunfight in St. Thomas, as her horrified family looked on.

The teenager was visiting the U.S. Virgin Islands on the Carnival Victory. She was riding with relatives in an open-air taxi (also know as a "safari bus") to popular Coki Point Beach, when the killing occurred.

While the excursion was not sold by the ship, Carnival Cruise Lines immediately suspended all shore excursions that include the Coki Beach area, until further notice.

"According to local law enforcement officials, the family was caught in the crossfire of a gun battle between local residents. Another guest sustained a minor injury in the incident and has been treated and released from a local hospital," Carnival said in a statement.

"Carnival Cruise Lines is profoundly shocked and saddened by this tragedy and we extend our deepest sympathy and condolences to the victim's family and loved ones in the wake of this unfathomable act of senseless violence."

U.S.V.I. Gov. John deJongh identified the slain tourist as Lizmarie Perez Chapparro from Puerto Rico, The Associated Press reports.

The 2,758-passenger Carnival Victory had departed San Juan on Sunday. The ship operates on year-round, weeklong cruises from San Juan.

A St. Thomas teenager also was killed in the gunfight as he attended a funeral. Police said the bullets were sprayed from a red Honda Civic and by someone attending a burial at a cemetery in Coki Point, AP reports.

It was not immediately clear who was being targeted, though authorities said the shootout was a battle between drug criminals.

"All Virgin Islanders share in the sorrow of such a senseless loss of life," deJongh said.

Three people were taken into custody as "persons of interest" after the deadly shooting.

Photo, Danquella Manera, flickr
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harry johnson

The cruiselines should capatalize on this, They can charge extra for an excursion throught the nig neighborhoods and issue the passengers a rifle with a 30 round clip. the passenger that takes out the most nigs gets a free cruise. Kill two birds with one stone.

July 26 2010 at 5:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bernie M

Sadly, the world is becoming a demented slaughterhouse within a cesspool of violence that has no boundaries.

July 15 2010 at 3:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gayle Pelella

I've been to St. Thomas 5x and love it there. This is the first time I've ever heard of a tradgedy like this one and I'm scared by it because We're going back in December onboard Carnival's Liberty although we are not scheduled to go to Coki point we're staying within the tour guide and taking the sky ride to the point and then to Megans Bay. My heart goes out to the families and I pray we will be safe there. We did however on our last trip in September we did take a walk and ended up in a not so nice area and quickly returned to the ship.

July 15 2010 at 12:45 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I have been to St Thomas and the Carribean many times. I usually walk or take a cab. I've snorkled and dived at Coki beach. It's a shame so many Americans are afraid nowadays. What happened to the " Home of the Brave"? Franklin Roosevelt said " The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." You have more of a chance getting hit by lightning or winning the lottery, than shot on a Cruise in the Carribean. I'll see you in Key West and Paradise Island in Dec."Bon Voyage."

July 14 2010 at 11:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

To the comments made by the user "King David"
You stupid ass, this young person was shot in the USVI...as in UNITED STATES VIRGIN ISLANDS and she came from Puerto Rico, also a US protectorate. You truly show your ignorant American attitudes and education where you know nothing of the world beyond your own state borders. Technically you could say that this was an American citizen show on Amercian soil, by Americans.

July 14 2010 at 7:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Wanda McCracken

I have cruised on several different occasions and felt that we were not safe in several of the carribean islands. We sailed to Bermuda in a bad storm onNorwegian and lost power for over 8 hours in 15 foot waves in the middle of the night. We were behind schedule and missed a day in Bermuda because of it. They offered us a small discount on our next cruise if we took it one with in a year. Big deal! No apologies, or nothin.
We just sailed again with Norwegian to the Bahamas and had the worst experience on the ship. Never again with Norwegian.

July 14 2010 at 3:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thank you PY for clarifying that not all US Virgin Ialslanders are Poor. Not sure what part of the islands the people making the ignorant remarks are going to but, like everywhere else, there's rich, poor, and middle class.
What happened was VERY tragic, not only for the 14 year old PRican tourist that was killed and her family, but for the good, warm, kindhearted people in the VI. I lived there for 19 years, and yes, it is not without it's crime, but neiher is anywhere else I lived. Unfortunately, all the islands will get a bad wrap for this which is unfortunate.
The VIPD needs to kick it up a few notches, this senseless crime on a 32 square mile island is horrible.

July 14 2010 at 3:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Yavana Kementari


I don't believe we'll ever get a handle on crime, gangs, the drug world, until we're prepared to get serious about punishment, setting limits to the number of "appeals" that waste our time and millions of taxpayer dollars. My feeling is that if you've been proven guilty, you've forfeited the right to more than one appeal and if that's lost, you've forfeited your right to ever step outside of prison again in your life. And you've forfeited your right to cable television whilst IN prison, a free education, free ANYTHING. You've forfeited your right to sit on your butt and let the taxpayer support you. And if you are guilty of one drop of innocent blood, you have forfeited your right to continue living. Period. Sorry if anyone thinks that sounds too harsh. But it has to be either them or us. Them=bad guys, us=law-abiding citizens who are victimized by THEM! That will hopefully dissuade anyone from calling me racist. I don't care what color a gang-banger is, if he or she does something that ends an innocent human life, they are toast! That is the only way, humanly speaking, that we will ever get the upper hand. But first, we need to follow Shakespeare's advice about the lawyers. We need to get rid of most of them. When there are too many of them, they figure out all sorts of evil ways to get the scum back out onto the street to victimize over and over again. I know! Why don't we put then in prison WITH their clients? Yeah. I like that. It might change their perspective...maybe. Doubt it. But anything is possible, I suppose! LOL!

July 14 2010 at 3:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Stevie Gee

I was a passenger om the Carnival "Victory" and it is a beauty of a ship. The islands it visits, however, are growing more violent with the spread of drugs and the accompanying power struggle for "turf". I mourn the loss of these islands of paradice, especially to the animal drug lords who seem to roam free and are brazen about their guns and drugs.

July 14 2010 at 3:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Well david, I'm most happy that you do not travel overseas. I would sincerely hate for folks in other countries to meet you and your sophmoric views.

As far as the USVI go, I've been there many times both St. Thomas and St. Johns. The people there are warm, freindly, and inviting. Let's not let this true tragedy cause us to cloud our better judgements on people and their cultures.

Perhaps some day our country will take stronger action against automatic weapons. A civilized society does not need such. We should vote against any politician who does not support strong gun control legistation.

July 14 2010 at 3:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply