Jamaica: Daughter of couple murdered in St Thomas said police refused Canadian help

By Jamaica Observer

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Melbourne Flake and his wife Etta

(JAMAICA OBSERVER) – The daughter of the elderly couple murdered in St Thomas earlier this month says the police refused help from Canadian authorities in probing the death of her parents.

Debbie Olfert, in a telephone interview with CTV Winnipeg, disclosed that Interpol and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) had offered to help with the investigations, but the Jamaica Constabulary Force had turned down the offer.

“Because I have been informed that there are some strong leads that the police are following, I am extremely encouraged. However, I do understand the police department is extremely stretched,” Olfert said Tuesday.

“I am grateful they have these leads on my parents’ behalf … but when we asked for help in the initial stages, I’m not sure why they said no, being so overwhelmed with these crimes,” she told the Canadian media.

Reports are that between 5:30 pm on January 8 and 10:30 am on January 9, construction workers made attempts to contact 81-year-old Melbourne Flake and his 70-year-old wife Etta Flake but were unsuccessful.

They went in search of them at the home and found them bound at the hands and feet.

The police were alerted and the man was found with wounds to his head while the woman, police said, appeared to have been suffocated.

The lawmen did not disclose a possible motive for the killing.

However, family members said they believe the couple is likely to have been killed by someone they know because the home was secure.

The Flakes had lived in Winnipeg for 53 years after immigrating to Canada and had been spending their winters in either Florida or Jamaica, Olfert said, adding that they started spending more time in Jamaica after her father built a home here a few years ago.

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