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Judge Released Thief Caught by Neighbors

By Arianna McKinney

A screenshot from the video.

“The good news is that neighbors pulled together and were able to apprehend somebody,” said Steve Reyer, president of the Nosara Security Association. The bad news is, in spite of evidence such as video recordings and multiple witnesses, the man apprehended was released by a judge in Nicoya less than 24 hours later.  “The legal system failed,” summed up Reyer.

Reyer related that around 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, February 19, a neighbor heard a noise and went with another neighbor to check on the house in section A of Pelada.  Three men wearing mask were in the house but two escaped.  One, however, was apprehended, and he had a hacksaw, a crowbar and a hammer with him. The Security Association was doing foot patrols nearby in section C and were called to the scene, along with private security companies, the Public Force, the Tourist Police and OIJ (the investigative organism). 

According to Humberto Aguirre Garcia, in charge of the Tourist Police group in Guiones, when the police arrived on the scene at the rental house in Playa Pelada, neighbors who had surprised the would-be thieves, had the suspect, whose last names are Garita Ramos, 33 years old, tied up. “When we arrived he had two backpacks filled with belongings of the guests,” Aguirre stated.

The tourist police secured the scene, OIJ arrived and took the suspect to Nicoya. In addition to witnesses and video cameras captured images of the break-in. The case was presented to a judge in Nicoya, but the judge “let him go because he ‘did not present any danger,’” Reyer said.

“This is why there’s crime running rampant in this country.  They’re more interested in criminal’s rights than in protecting the victims,” Reyer stated. He indicated that witnesses are planning to go to Nicoya to testify against the suspect because there is still a case against him and they are also contacting national media to try to draw attention to the need for reforms in the legal system. 

The renters were a foreign family with kids who were out of the house during the break-in. 


More community news

Hamilton Ruiz: Educator at Heart and Politician by Profession

At 71, former councilman, legislator and ambassador Hamilton Ruiz Cascante is still active in the community, although from a place with a less public profile. “Don Hamilton,” as he is known in the city of Nicoya, was born on a hot December 11th in 1941 in Lagunilla of Santa Cruz.

Change Seeks to Speed Up Traffic Flow in Nicoya

The project to change the direction of traffic in Nicoya, which initiated in 2010, is now in advanced stages. These changes would make entering and leaving the downtown area of the city by vehicle easier.  

Funds Raised by Samara Fiestas Reduced by Unfulfilled Contract

The fiestas held from December 27th to January 1st raised about 5 million colones ($10,000) to support community projects, but the figure could be almost 3 million colones ($6000) more if a contractor from Liberia would pay up, estimated Emilse Steller Ramirez, Treasurer of the Samara Progressive Association.

Nosara Center’s Aqueduct Lacks Functional Sanitary Permit

The Ministry of Health is giving the Nosara ASADA until February 21, 2013 to comply with the sanitary order issued on January 9 to obtain the functional sanitary permit. This order is the result of the physical sanitary inspection conducted on November 16 as a result of suspicion that the water was causing symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting suffered by students at Serapio Lopez School.  

John Fraiser Building in Nosara Center Will Be Repaired

The Ministry of Health ordered the urgent repair of the five-story building located in the center of Nosara.

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