Cockayne investigation: He said, she said

Larry_king CNN’s Larry King Live, Wednesday night.

We begin with a really tragic story, the stabbing to death of a young man, Jamie Cockayne, on St. John Island back in the Virgin Islands back on June 19. Read the show’s transcript.


Shaun Pennington, Publisher/Editor of the St. John Source replies.

"It’s time to set the record straight. Because Larry King sure as hell won’t."  Read her editorial.

 

11 thoughts on “Cockayne investigation: He said, she said”

  1. Hi,
    I am from Moorestown, NJ and I was on St. John this July 20-25th.
    It seems like Larry King is creating a media frenzy similar to the Natalie Holloway story which captured every evening’s news for many months.
    I have have had a very positive relationship with St. John and it’s people for many years. It is the most naturally therapeutic place I know.
    I come all the time and stay at Maho Bay Tent Cabins. My family has started coming. It has helped us as individuals and has a family to get through many difficult events including: my own PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) which resulted from a personal assault while working as a flight attendant on a Paris-JFK flight in 1996, my brother’s dissappearance and murder in 1999, my nephew’s death in 2002, and my dad’s death in 2005.
    Visiting St. John has repeatedly saved my heart and my psyche from terminal hopelessness. For goodness sake, the bumper stickers even say “Be Kind”.
    I am the founder of Sky Help Trauma Intervention Services. (www.skyhelp.org )
    St. John is where I plan to take emergency responders and returning military families to relax and recover in the gentle atmosphere of sparkling waters and good people who visit and live on this jewel in the Carribean.
    I hope that people aren’t scared off by news programs looking for sensational stories.
    Sincerely,
    Susan Howland

  2. When does the delusion end? Year after year, murder after murder, rape, mother-and-child pined against the guardrail, tourists mugged at gunpoint outside villa, trucks smashing headfirst into jeeps, tucks running over small boys, trucks careening out of control into the schoolyard, on and on and on and on. Year after year it’s the same story. And each and every time the island and its guests act like this has never happened before. The tourism industry machine kicks into gear and describes the “isolate incident” to mitigate future damage to tourism dollars. About the best thing that could happen for the longer range future of St John right now is for someone at CNN to actually do some research, crunch the numbers to get a “per capita” crime rate over the past 5 years and compare it to the worst neighborhoods in LA on national television. That type of reality check and publicity might just be the impetus to make the local politicians give a damn and do something other than spend all their time and money mitigating the damaging impact of the truth getting out. About the only thing that will get St John back into the magazines as one of the best destinations (if only just a better destination) is for the government to stop spending all the time and money working to minimize the PR effects of the islands problems, and instead actually deal with the problems themselves.

  3. Let’s see Joe,
    So I guess I should have been locking my doors for the last 23 years I’ve lived on St. John, a place I feel more comfortable than any other. Is it the politician’s fault that someone is driving recklessly? It doesn’t just happen here in St. John, that’s a matter of personal responsibility. I would however,like to see legislation requiring commercial vehicles have the same million dollar liability as I needed to charter boats in the National Park, just a cost of doing business. As far as young Mr. Cockayne’s senseless murder, the accused is a transplant from Atlanta, and Jamie also seems to have played a role in the whole affair with his alleged confrontational behavior while drinking, something his mother has also been silent about(she is absolved by her grief). Too often our youths are quick solve arguments with deadly force-not just a fistfight in the parking lot that many times ended up in my day with the combatants becoming tight friends- but with knives, guns and blunt objects.

  4. I wrote a letter to the editor of Tradewinds about this very thing.
    I think something has gone wrong in Love City. I also had heard that it was NOT the guy from Atlanta they are considering the prime suspect but Boston who was trying to flee on a boat to Antigua I think (one of the other islands).
    My point I made in Tradewinds, was living on island from 2003-2005 til I had to leave when my mom got sick, gave me a totally different opinion then say a visitor may have of STJ.
    STJ has gone thru the racial unrest in the summer/fall 2005 after Bali Bob and Ester Frett, the 2005 murder of David Geiger and maiming of his son and now the murder of Jamie Cockayne.
    I think a family is dealing with a tremendous amount of grief and they are also not getting answers. So they go to the news, CNN and Fox…..
    To me that did make a difference, suddenly we have suspects in custody, and things are beginning to be pieced together.
    No one asks to be murdered or maimed. Sometimes the harsh realities of hate and anger just rock things and change things forever.
    As I said in Tradewinds. St. John may not be shangri-la but to me it is very close.
    I just hope and pray that whatever is ripping at such a small island
    over develoment
    race relations
    drugs
    Whatever, that we can get to the core, the root of the issue and deal with it.
    I may be off island at the moment but my heart and soul still reside on St. John.

  5. Yes, CJ, I do blame the politicians. Who else in a democracy should be held accountable? The police? They answer to the people we elect to the executive branch. If the hands of the executive branch are tied, then we hold the legislature accountable until they pass legislation to enable better law enforcement. That’s how it works. If you feel comfortable leaving your door unlocked despite the continuous violent crimes making headlines in St John over the past 3 years that is your decision. But I disagree that yours is a smart or wise choice. This is the exact delusion I am talking about, and it propagates a lackadaisical, do nothing attitude – which fits perfectly within the government’s PR campaign that these are always “isolated incidents”, and that there is nothing wrong. The island has a crime problem that is as bad as any big city in the upper 48, and I believe that is a verifiable fact. That is my suggestion to CNN – verify it – let’s see a per capita violent crime statistic for St John since 2004. I too love St John. I have pleanty of time and money invested on the island. But, I completely disagree with the prevailing myopic idea that pretending that the crime problem does not exist in order to protect tourism is good for the island. Let’s see some per capita data, face reality, and do something to protect our long-term future.

  6. Note to young kids with money (or no money, no matter…) do not drink more than you can handle as it can lead to aggressive behavior and riling up locals who are already a little leery. Not defending them but seeing enough bawdy young drunk tourists gets them agitated. Not defending the violence wither but this is a prime example of why (not matter where you are) you need to mind boundaries.
    I lived on St. John for a year and just remained respectful, aware of local ways of doing things and well- did not make waves. This is how it should be. Sad the kid died but I think he might have run his mouth to the wrong guys with terrible consequences. I have cringed at some of the behavior I saw down there.

  7. Note to young kids with money (or no money, no matter…) do not drink more than you can handle as it can lead to aggressive behavior and riling up locals who are already a little leery. Not defending them but seeing enough bawdy young drunk tourists gets them agitated. Not defending the violence wither but this is a prime example of why (not matter where you are) you need to mind boundaries.
    I lived on St. John for a year and just remained respectful, aware of local ways of doing things and well- did not make waves. This is how it should be. Sad the kid died but I think he might have run his mouth to the wrong guys with terrible consequences. I have cringed at some of the behavior I saw down there.

  8. Dear Cj and Susan, I am sure you have both moved on since the murder of my son Jamie and are looking forward to a lovely holiday. I do hope you have Peace and Love this coming year, sincerely.
    Please understand, we have never held the vast majority of St. Johnians responsibly for Jamie’s murder. We do hold the police responsible for carrying out an investigation and arresting ALL involved not just the creeps they had arrested but have since let out on bail for $7,500 . When a robbery suspect has earned $135,000.00 bail amount. We do hold the prosecutor responsible for not showing at Selmo’s detention hearing. We do hold the Justice department responsible for not inviting the Federal investigators and Federal prosecutor to try the cases.
    You may have and or visited St, John for years and if that is true you must be the only local that has not in some been touched by crime or doesn’t know someone that has been touched by crime. Kamal stabbed another white boy in the fall of 2006, no arrest although he was positively identified. Larry King did one phone interveiw and never followed up as he promised, Greta same story. Jamie’s killer are all back on St. John if you see them out and about would you let me know so I can report it. Surely, you will not go directly to the police for fear of retribution. I know what goes on and I know the VI is a hotbed of corruption and crimes unsolved. Read the paper. If you can understand anything, understand this, my fight is not just for Jamie it is for all law abiding citizens on St. John. The many that are sick and tired of having to be home by 6PM and out of Cruz Bay before the stabbings and shootings begin.

  9. as a person thats not only looking in from the outside, i feel that certain things are questionable or, even more, suspicious as to how things are being handled. the murderer gets a new trial even though they have VERY CREDIBLE evidence such as dna and witnesses and yet those whom they do not have ONE credible witness for are being blasted and treated just as bad as the one who should continued to be locked away. as a person from the islands everyone knows everybody, getting huge favors from those they know in power whether it be for good or bad. and thats exactly what i feel is happening along with a lil more. and like the person said earlier jonh’s mother hasnt spoken anything on the behavior of her son’s ADDICTIVE and HARRASSIVE ways. but every dog has its day and when those persons day come i hope, no i pray they get hit hard. and for MS JEAN COCKAYNE who said kimal stabbed another WHITE BOY get your facts straight before you continue to run that whole in your face.

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