- Raped, buggered, stabbed and left for dead
Imagine stumbling upon the unconscious, bloodied and beaten body of a young woman, who was evidently raped, buggered, and left for dead. Imagine learning that the victim is suffering from a cracked skull, a slashed throat, blunt force injury to the left ear, a stab wound to the right eye, and a back scarred from attempts to burn her alive. Now imagine learning that this is your daughter. This is not the scene from a dark movie, but the trauma experienced by Claudine Spence, when she found her 17-year-old daughter a day after she had gone missing, after leaving home to get credit for her phone.
Claudine Spence, mother of the 17-year-old, in an exclusive interview with the Western Mirror, revealed the details of the incident that has left her daughter fighting for her life, and her family in shambles. “On the 28th of July, a Friday evening, Jamie* (not her real name) went to a nearby shop, which was less than 10 minutes away, to get a phone card,” Spence began, indicating that this was about 6 pm that day. “About 6:35, when she did not return home, I attempted to call her phone, but did not get through to her.” Spence explained that as her suspicions grew, she decided to visit the Montego Police Station to make a report, after Jamie’s two brothers’, one 21 and the other 8 years old, search for her turned up nothing.
“I sat up all night on Friday, trying to figure out where she could have been. I know my daughter, she would have been home already, so I feared something was wrong,” Spence told the Western Mirror. After organizing a search party that night, which also turned up unsuccessful in finding Jamie, Spence sunk further into despair, fearing the worst to have happened to her daughter, who had only a month before graduated high school, where she was a prefect and model student. The following morning, Saturday July 29, an early search party revealed a most gruesome discovery.
Jamie’s bloodied and unconscious body, seemingly moments away from death, was found in bushes in her community of Bogue Hill in St. James. “She was practically dead,” Spence relayed to the Western Mirror. It gets worse, as details revealed by doctors indicate a far more gruesome picture than many had suspected when they found the teen in the early hours of the morning. “She had a cracked skull, resulting in fragments of her brain being hit – as a result of them using a stone to hit her in her head,” Spence told this newsroom. “They stabbed her in the right eyeball, so I’m not sure if she’ll be able to see once she is conscious, her throat was slashed, she was buggered; her left hand is not moving – something doctors suspect may be nerve damage, and they battered her left ear with a stone.” It was also discovered that the teen’s back was badly burnt, not from acid, as has been incorrectly reported, but from an unidentified chemical the perpetrators doused the teen with, before setting her on fire.
“I’m just trying to be strong for her, but I’m hurting… I’m angry, and I’m sad, but I’m trying to be strong for her,” Spence offered, when asked how she has been coping in the aftermath of that incident.
For Spence, who has spent all of her 41 years alive in that community, expressed that she has witnessed incidents of crime before, but none of this magnitude, referring to what has happened to her daughter. “Since that happened to Jamie, it has brought the whole community closer together, and I am getting a lot of support.” Despite the strong sense of community, and individuals expressing their warmth and empathy to Spence’s family, a silent anger brews among residents. “Community members here want the perpetrators to be caught, but by them, not by the police,” Spence revealed.
For Jamie’s brothers, who both adore their sister, the tragedy is weighing on them in different ways. For the elder brother, who is 21, silence, and a loss of appetite since the traumatic experience has been his expression of the hurt. “He is very protective of his sister, so much so that he wouldn’t allow her to go to certain places in MoBay,” Spence said, “so to see this happen, I don’t know what he is thinking, but I know he is hurting.” For the younger brother, the eight-year-old, Spence told the Western Mirror that despite him asking constantly for her, she does not intend to give him the full details of what happened until he is older.
Jamie has since been visited by members of her school community, who remembers her as a punctual student, as well as her commitment to reaching school early in the mornings, just so she could help to prepare breakfast for the students who were on the breakfast programme.
“I will not let this rest. We will pursue this for as long as we need to. We need justice,” Spence concluded.
The police are treating the incident as abduction, rape, buggery, and attempted murder.