Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Costa Rica: US Tourist Shot in the Chest in Los Yoses, Resisting Armed Assailants is a Bad Choice

According to The Tico Times, on Saturday night (April 19) four assailants robbed three US tourists in San José in an attack that ended with one of the victims rushed to Calerdón Guardia Hospital with a gunshot wound to the chest.

One of the gunshot victims, Leah Britton, 24, was in stable condition on Monday (April 21).

Judicial Investigation Police (OIJ)  have made no arrests and have not recovered any of the victims' belongings.

Britton and two other American tourists were walking in the Los Yoses neighborhood in eastern San José at approximately 2130 hours were approached by four men traveling in a gray car. 

Four suspects reportedly in their 20s stepped out of the vehicle and threatened the group with a gun. 

The assailants stole cash, cellphones and passports before telling the victims to lie on the ground.

COMMENT: Britton, after handing over her belongings, refused to lie down, at which point one of the suspects shot her. The attackers then fled in their vehicle.

Britton was subsequently rushed to the hospital. 

This posting underlines the importance of complying with armed assailants who have the capacity to end one's life.

As I have said so often over the years, armed assailants in Costa Rica usually carry firearms and have the capacity and intent to summarily kill victims. 

Few young adults possess the life-experience and/or prudence to comply with gunmen when they are outnumbered.  

It is no surprise that the victims' possessions have not been recovered and that the four assailants have not been arrested, as few street hoodlums in Costa Rica are ever arrested for their crimes.

In recent years, the threat level in Costa Rica has been designated by the US Department of State as "High," on its four-tier threat categorization system of "Critical, High, Medium and Low."

"High" is the second highest threat level in the Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS).