Tonight, the family of a missing man is losing hope in finding him alive. 24-year-old Alexis *Natanael* Canan, a resident of Belize City’s Belama area, left the mainland with his common-law wife, 30-year-old Guatemalan Irma Lopez on Thursday, December 9. The pair was en route to a camp on Turneffe Island as caretakers. The couple was expected to remain on the caye for a month but on Tuesday, December 14, Lopez returned to the mainland with the help of Coast Guard officers. Police officers questioned Lopez at the Coast Guard headquarters where she told them that Canan began exhibiting strange behaviour on Friday and Saturday. She says however that on Sunday, December 12, he reportedly began hallucinating and claiming that someone wanted to murder him. Canan reportedly ran away and was followed by Lopez, who says she eventually lost sight of him. Since then, he has not been seen or heard from. Coast Guard officers searched the area but efforts to find him were fruitless. Canan’s brother, Luis Perez, spoke to Love News today.
Luis Perez, Brother: “He went to a caye on Turneffe island to stay and take care of the caye he and his common law wife but then I don’t know what happened out there but she came in on Tuesday with the coast guard without him and her explanation is that he was getting a little and then he started to walk around on the beach side but she got tired of it that he was minding her too much that she went into the house and when she came out back to go look for him no kind of sign of him. So that’s when she said she started to look for him all night, the next day and she was asking for help out there but there is no one unless you see someone in a skiff or boat to ask for help but when she came in I don’t know what to tell the police because up to now we haven’t gotten any response.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: When is it that his common law came back ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “She came back Tuesday with the coast guard.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: Why with the coast guard ? What happened there ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “According to her she got rescued by some fishermen out there and the fishermen called the coast guard and they came and then she explained what was going on , what is happening and that’s how the coast guard started to search but when she came in here in Belize with them she didn’t go direct to us, we are the family of the guy, she went to some other persons and talked to them so right so I came to know and my brothers came to know due to other people but she didn’t that have that thing to come tell us. Right now we are trying to talk to her but she runs like she’s crazy when she sees us, she just runs.”
Perez says that the family has yet to receive helpful information about what transpired. He says that Lopez and the police have been less than forthcoming.
Luis Perez, Brother: “She came to the police and complained that we are harassing her too much. All we want to know from her is for her to collaborate to find my brother because only she knows and the police told us to stop bothering her because we will get charged instead.“
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: Is she a Belizean ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “No she is a Guatemalan.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: And it was only your brother and her that were on the island ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “Yes only those two.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: So only she knows what happened ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “Well obviously because two persons on an island and one goes missing beside you that means something is going wrong.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: And have you spoken to police officers? What are they saying ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “The other day I came and they said I have to wait. I have to wait for what ? An what I want is I don’t see how she is out here and I know when something like that they always have a person in custody but this time they said they can’t do that.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: Do you believe that something or someone did something to your brother ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “Yes because my brother was not a trouble man like that. He hangs, he drinks and things happen to him out here and up to now he never told us that somebody wanted to do him something but as he went out there thing happened to him.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: Do you believe he’s still alive ?
Luis Perez, Brother: “We have the fifty-fifty right now because we can’t say if he’s dead because we haven’t received a clue yet and then if he’s living he would have already come out of whatever spot he was in. The police doesn’t want to question her right now according to them because they say they need to find the body or if they do find a body and it’s him they have to go through a post mortem and to the examination if anything happens to it then they will start to investigate the case. But up to right now they just have to wait and I don’t know how long we have to wait. We just want my brother alive or even if he passed away we just want the body for us to be done it this thing because the person who is taking the most pain is my mother because that’s her baby.”
Hipolito Novelo, Love News: And especially during Christmas.
Luis Perez, Brother: “Especially these times when we’re always together even if we don’t have a good relationship but we’re always looking out for this young boy you see ? So we will miss him a lot. Right now we’re missing him already.”