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Long Island pizzeria owner becomes the 12th American tourist to mysteriously die in the Dominican Republic after he 'suffered respiratory problems after having a drink' - and now Hard Rock Hotel is removing its liquor dispensers amid the crisis

A Long Island pizzeria owner has reportedly become the 12th documented case of an American tourist who has died in the Dominican Republic under mysterious circumstances in the year - as one of the hotels at the center of the scandal decides to remove liquor dispensers in response to the rash of deaths.
Vittorio Caruso, 56, of Glen Cove, died on June 17 shortly after he reportedly drank something and became critically ill at the Boca Chica Resort in Santo Domingo.
The State Department confirmed Caruso’s death to the Fox News Channel.
Lisa Maria Caruso, Caruso’s sister-in-law, told Fox News that Vittorio was in good health.
He owned a pizzeria with his brother until a month ago. She said he traveled alone to the Dominican Republic.
‘We found out he was brought by ambulance to the hospital in respiratory distress after drinking something,’ Caruso said. ‘We were told he wasn't responding to any meds he was given and died.
‘I honestly don't know exactly what happened, as we have been told conflicting stories from different people there.

Caruso told Fox News that Dominican authorities wanted to cremate the body, but the family refused, saying it wants an autopsy.
‘It is very hard to get a straight story from anyone there,’ she said.
‘They even wanted to cremate the body. We insisted on having the body sent back here.
‘This was a complete shock to us, as Vittorio was not a sick person.
‘He was expected to return home on June 27.’
In response to the strange rash of deaths, the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Punta Cana announced that it would remove liquor dispensers from minibars in hotel rooms.  
Hotel management also announced that it has hired an American-based health care company to inspect the premises so as to 'ensure the on-site health clinic is complying with all international and US standards,' according to the New York Post.

Two of the 14 Americans who have died in the Dominican Republic in the last year stayed at the Hard Rock in Punta Cana. 
Earlier on Saturday it was learned that a retired police officer from Ohio became the 11th American vacationer to die suddenly in the Dominican Republic.
Jerry Curran, a 78-year-old who had served with the Bedford Police Department for 32 years before becoming a bailiff, died in January while staying at the Dreams Resort in Punta Cana. 
Three days after he and wife Janet arrived at the resort on January 22, Curran began vomiting and was unresponsive. He underwent surgery but died hours later, WYKC reports.
'He went to the Dominican Republic healthy and he just never came back,' said daughter Kellie Brown. 
She, along with sisters Kim Pidala and Jackie Sikes, have been trying to understand the cause of their father's death after learning of the others in the news. 
'I thought something's not right my father was a healthy 78-year-old, he took care of himself and I just didn't think anything like this was possible, but then I started to hear other people's stories,' Kellie added. 

Kellie was shocked when she received a call telling her of her father's medical problems around 3am on Friday morning. 
'Your father needs surgery or he's going to die and they need fifty thousand dollars and you need to send it with a copy of your passport, the front and back of your debit card and an authorization stating that you would allow them to withdraw fifty thousand dollars,' Kellie said. 
Kellie sent $40,000 while her mother put $10,000 on a credit card.
For the sisters, the time of death that the hospital and U.S. embassy put is just one red flag that they've noticed. The time put was 11am on January 26 but Kellie asserts she got the call several hours beforehand. 
Concerns are also raised over the cause of death. 
'One of them is pulmonary edema which seems to be common in everyone else who's passed that we're learning about,' Kellie added. 
Also listed were Cerebral hypoxia, severe encephalitic cranial trauma and subdural hematoma. 
Doctors stated that the pulmonary edema was 'scant' and not enough of a reason to be a direct cause of death. The brain injury was also questionable. 
'He never complained of hitting his head or falling,' Kellie said. She admitted that Jerry was taking blood thinners, which could have impacted his health.
The sisters plan on sending their father's medical records to doctors in the States. Kellie shared that she has also spoken with FBI. 
She stressed the importance of getting medical insurance when traveling. 
Jerry's personal insurance did eventually pay the money Kellie and her money spent but sent the check in the retired officer's name. They are working to have that changed. 
Tourism Minister Francisco Javier García told reporters that autopsies for eight fatalities in the Dominican Republic show the tourists died of natural causes. He did not mention three of the casualties
 Tourism Minister Francisco Javier García told reporters that autopsies for eight fatalities in the Dominican Republic show the tourists died of natural causes. He did not mention three of the casualties
In a statement to WYKC, the resort mentioned Tourism Minister Francisco Javier García's assertion that the recent deaths can all be attributed to natural causes. 
'Dreams Punta Cana has a range of safety, security and quality control protocols in place, including having a physician living on-site. We take the safety and security of every guest seriously, providing industry best practices and extensive staff training to manage the needs of guests,' they added in the statement. 
'This includes training to recognize and respond to a range of health situations and support guest safety quickly and with compassion. All security agents are trained in emergency protocols, and we have clear procedures for addressing health issues, which were correctly followed in Mr. Curran’s situation.' 
On Thursday, the families of two U.S. citizens revealed that their loved ones died suddenly in the Dominican Republic and are now questioning the circumstances of their deaths. 
Chris Palmer, a 41-year-old Army veteran, and Barbara Diane Maser-Mitchell, a 69-year-old retired nurse from Pennsylvania, are among the two latest confirmed to have died in the DR, the State Department said to Fox News.
Palmer was found dead in his room at the Villa Cocotal Palma resort in Punta Cana on April 18, 2018. Maser-Mitchell suffered cardiac arrest after leaving the Excellence resort in Punta Cana and died on September 17, 2016.
Chris Palmer, a 41-year-old Army veteran
Barbara Diane Maser-Mitchell, a 69-year-old retired nurse from Pennsylvania
Chris Palmer, a 41-year-old Army veteran, and Barbara Diane Maser-Mitchell, a 69-year-old retired nurse from Pennsylvania, are among the two latest confirmed to have died in the DR

Dominican authorities said that Palmer had a pulmonary edema and died as a result of a heart attack, which was listed as his official cause of death. 
The Dominican Republic's tourism minister said recent media coverage of deaths at resorts are 'exaggerated' and are a result of natural causes, leaving the son of one of the casualties to call the country's response 'disgraceful'. 
'As soon as he died, I wondered if he was poisoned, if he was drugged,' said Bernadette Hiller, an ex-girlfriend of Palmer who saw him a week before he died. 'He was healthy as a horse.' 
Palmer, a salesman and scuba diving instructor, told friends he was feeling ill while at the resort. Hiller said that he had a really bad headache. 
It is unknown whether Palmer had a beverage from the hotel bar or the mini bar, and he was said to be in the country to sell timeshares and teaching scuba diving at the resort. 
He was found dead in his room on April 18 and Dominican authorities said he had aspirated on his vomit. 

'We are devastated and are seeking answers,' Hiller added. 'This was so sudden and unexpected. This has been a nightmare for his family.' 
Maser-Mitchell was in the DR celebrating her birthday with her son and his partner. 
On her second day at the resort, and after drinking, the retired nurse complained about feeling sick. She went up to her room, which was adjacent to her son's. 

She was still feeling under the weather on the next day and did not join the group for breakfast.
'In the 15 years I knew her, she never suffered aftereffects,' companion, Terry Mackey, said. 
Growing worse, her family called the resort doctor who asked the mother if she wanted to go to a hospital. After initially declining, Maser-Mitchell said she would go. 
While in the ambulance Maser-Mitchell went into cardiac arrest. 'I was sitting in the ambulance with her, holding her hand the whole time,' Mackey said. 
She added: 'The hospital personnel were not kind or helpful.'
Maser-Mitchell's body was returned to the U.S. but her family were forced only have a viewing because her body was in bad shape. 
Mackey was unsure whether the retired nurse had a drink from her room's minibar. 
Tourism Minister Francisco Javier García told reporters that autopsies for the fatalities show the tourists died of natural causes. He said five of the autopsies are complete, and three are undergoing further toxicological analysis with the help from the FBI because of the circumstances of the deaths.
With some 3.2 million U.S. tourists visiting the Dominican Republic last year, he said, it's not unusual for eight people to die while on vacation over any six-month period. 
Dominican officials say they are confident the three deaths still under investigation were also from natural causes. 
'We want the truth to prevail,' García said. 'There is nothing to hide here.'
Garcia did not elaborate on the two latest deaths to be added to the tally. 
The first deaths to make headlines, and still the most mysterious, were those of a couple who seemingly died at the same time in the same hotel room. The bodies of Edward Nathaniel Holmes, 63, and Cynthia Ann Day, 49, were found May 30 in their room at the Grand Bahia Principe La Romana hotel. Several medications were found in the room, including an anti-inflammatory drug, an opioid and blood-pressure medicine, García said.
García said the number of U.S. tourist deaths in the Dominican Republic dropped 56 percent from 2016 to 2018, although he did not provide further numbers or details
 García said the number of U.S. tourist deaths in the Dominican Republic dropped 56 percent from 2016 to 2018, although he did not provide further numbers or details
William Cox, the son of Leyla Cox, shared his frustration with the lack of information he has gotten on his mother's death and asserted that she did not die from a heart attack. 'It's absolutely disgraceful. It's disgraceful to dismiss the families with everything that's going on over there,' Cox said
William Cox, the son of Leyla Cox, shared his frustration with the lack of information he has gotten on his mother's death and asserted that she did not die from a heart attack. 'It's absolutely disgraceful. It's disgraceful to dismiss the families with everything that's going on over there,' Cox said
Autopsies found pulmonary edema, an accumulation of fluid in the lungs frequently caused by heart disease.
Soon after the couple's death, family members appeared in U.S. media reports questioning the death of Miranda Schaup-Werner, 41, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, who died May 25 at the Luxury Bahia Principe Bouganville hotel. A family spokesman told reporters that she collapsed after getting a drink from the minibar.
An autopsy found that she died of a heart attack, García said.
García said the number of U.S. tourist deaths in the Dominican Republic dropped 56 percent from 2016 to 2018, although he did not provide further numbers or details. The U.S. State Department also discounted the idea of a surge of tourist deaths, saying the agency had not seen an uptick in the number of U.S. citizen who died there. 
Leyla Cox, 53 of New Brighton, Staten Island died on Monday
Robert Bell Wallace, 67, of California, died in April
Yvette Monique Sport, 51,  of Glenside, died in June of 2018
Miranda Schaup-Werner, 41, of Pennsylvannia died in May
David Harrison, 45, died at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in July 2018
Joseph Allen, 55, of Avenel, New Jersey, was found dead in his hotel room at the Terra Linda hotel in Sosua
 VICTIMS (left to right, top to bottom): Leyla Cox, Robert Bell Wallace, Yvette Monique Sport, Miranda Schaup-Werner, David Harrison and Joseph Allen
García showed reporters a summary of pathologists' findings in each death but declined to share the autopsy reports, saying they are not public records and that only the families could authorize their release. 
Jerry Curran, 78, died Jan. 26 in the Dreams Punta Cana resort, and an autopsy report blamed pulmonary edema and other causes, García said. 
Then on April 12, 67-year-old Robert Bell Wallace of California died of septic shock, pneumonia and multi-organ failure. A week later, on April 19, 70-year-old John Corcoran died of natural causes. Family members have said he had a pre-existing heart condition, and officials did not release further details.
'What some media are describing as an avalanche of deaths doesn't correspond to the reality that we're living today in the Dominican Republic,' García said.

Leyla Ann Cox, 53, died from a heart attack June 10, he said. She had signs of a previous heart attack. Three days later, on June 13, Joseph Allen, also 55, died of a heart attack at the Centro Vacacional Terra Linda resort in Sosua, anthracosis edema and pulmonary congestion.
The Dominican government has been criticized for not being more forthcoming about the details of the death investigations.
William Cox, the son of Leyla Cox, shared his frustration with the lack of information he has gotten on his mother's death and asserted that she did not die from a heart attack. 
'It's absolutely disgraceful. It's disgraceful to dismiss the families with everything that's going on over there,' Cox said.

3 comments:

  1. This is racial... and indicative of the race wars upon us.. but that we refuse to believe. WHITE = EVIL. BLACK and BROWN? = VICTIMS.

    White people are under attack worldwide...this is just one episode.

    We are all Boers now..

    ReplyDelete
  2. It's a disgruntled employee putting poison in the liquor in the mini fridge bottles and in the bar's bottles.....duh

    ReplyDelete
  3. There is a mass murderer on the loose in the DR. Who has access to those little booze bottles? Someone at the distribution center? Death penalty.

    ReplyDelete