Earlier this week, we told you of a couple that was found dead in their home; 46-year-old Hermelinda Pinks Emmanuel and her husband 43-year-old Jason Emmanuel. It is alleged that Hermelinda died at the hands of her husband Jason Emmanuel who later turned the gun on himself. The tragedy has sent shock-waves through the Belize Coast Guard, where Hermelinda worked as a civilian employee. Captain Elton Bennett, Vice Commandant of the Belize Coast Guard, said that Hermelinda was an exceptional employee.
Captain Elton Bennett – Vice Commandant of the Belize Coast Guard
“Ms. Hermelinda Emmanuel was posted at the Belize Coast Guard for little less than six years. She was employed as the Coast Guard administrative assistant a job which cross-cuts between logistics and administration meaning doing work that relates to the Coast Guard Headquarters and to the Ministry of Defense and across the wider public service. She was certainly and expert in public service matters as her job required her to be, she was often consulted on complex matters of public service affairs and she did that at the highest level of professionalism and she was able to guide the Coast Guard Headquarters to ensure that we stayed within the policy and regulations of those regulations and policies set forth by the wider public service. We were surprised, we were shocked at the information, we had received information particularly myself, I was close to both husband and wife. I knew Jason we grew up together on Toledo Street in Belmopan, from we were kids we went to the same schools and so I knew him and I knew here six years working here so to a certain extent I was aware that she was living in an abusive relationship whilst there were no physical signs of abuse on her. She was always very professional looking at work. We never saw or we were never aware of any physical abuse towards her. We knew he was a controlling person, we knew that he was a controlling person, we know that she underwent counseling and marriage counseling which particularly myself and we saw signs of improvement. We were devastated by the information that we receive and the Belize Coast Guard strongly condemns the action taken by Jason Emanuel towards his wife not only as an organization but myself as a man.”
Bennett said that the Belize Coast Guard strongly condemns any form of domestic violence. Bennett added that moving forward, the Belize Coast Guard intends to create more awareness amongst their staff of the dangers of domestic violence to avoid losing another member of their staff in this manner.