The tourism industry has reiterated its distaste at the reported attack of a visitor on Seven Mile Beach.
A 21-year old US tourist was taken to hospital after he was stabbed while walking along the Public Beach area south of Calico Jack’s at around 11.50pm Wednesday, 19 January.
Acting Director of Tourism Shomari Scott said the Department of Tourism deeply regretted that the incident occurred and that they wished the visitor a speedy recovery from his injuries.
“The safety and security of visitors is our highest priority, so naturally we view this incident very seriously. This type of senseless activity committed against a guest to our Island is contrary to all of the positive results that the DOT and others are striving to achieve in order to grow and strengthen the tourism industry.
“We urge the perpetrators to stop and think about the detrimental effect their actions are having on our community and our Country and we encourage anyone who has information to contact the RCIPS,” said Mr. Scott.
Other tourism experts moved to condemn the attack. Paul Robinson, marketing director of the Reef, said representatives of the Cayman Islands had heard of the incident while at the Caribbean Marketplace tourism conference in Montego Bay.
“The crime situation in Cayman is being openly discussed and you can’t avoid it. People on-island were calling us at the convention… you can’t market to compensate for crime. Whatever it takes to get that stopped has to be done immediately.
“Going back 30 years, we have always marketed Cayman as the safest place in the Caribbean. When I started at Holiday Inn we didn’t have locks on the doors; you could sleep with the sliding screen there and let in fresh air… we can’t get back to that day, but we can be a whole lot better than we are now” said Mr. Robinson.
Calico Jack’s owner Handel Whittaker told the Compass last week that the incident did not happen at the popular waterfront bar and that they had taken every step to keep their patrons safe, including having five security guards on duty that night.
“It’s very concerning to us. People come here and they wander up and down the beach all the time and they don’t have to worry about predators hanging around for them,” said Mr. Whittaker