“A woman drop she off at the Tucville Bridge” – source
(By Mondale Smith and Michael Jordan)
Amidst mixed emotions of tears and jubilation, 21-year old Roreema Dookie gratefully hugged her father in the East La Penitence Police station compound, while repeatedly uttering, “I just want to go home…”
Twenty-four hours earlier, on Wednesday, while in the company of her boyfriend, the young woman was forced into a waiting vehicle by three gun-toting men. The men had struck her boyfriend several times resulting in minor injuries to his head and face.
Fears for the worst grew with the arrival of relatives and concerned friends to her home. Her father had received a call demanding a ransom of $40M.
However at about 20: 40hrs last night this publication watched as male relatives and friends embraced her as if a long lost princess had come home.
Kaieteur News understands that she was allegedly being held somewhere between the Festival City and Tucville areas and was taken to the bridge by a woman at about 20:00hrs yesterday. While at the bridge, a crowd gathered around her. Two members of the Community Police saw the crowd and intervened and while she requested to be taken home she was taken to the East La Penitence Police Station.
A relative at the station last night said, “She’s safe and she is unharmed and we are happy.” So overjoyed were some relatives that they literally hoisted her off her feet and emotions of relief and happiness were evident with each embrace.
She could not immediately say which house she was being held captive since she related to relatives that she was blindfolded.
It is not clear if the ransom was paid but from her father’s reactions it was indeed a sign of relief to have his baby daughter back in his arms. Unselfishly, he offered her his phone to speak to her mother but the emotions were more than the young woman could find words to express.
Minutes after reuniting with her family she was whisked away in a waiting vehicle to seek medical attention.
On Wednesday night a massive search was launched immediately to locate the 21-year old after it was reported that she was abducted on Thomas Street around 20:00 hours.
The woman, who is the daughter of popular bar owner, Beharry Dookie called Natoo of Lamaha and Pike Streets, Kitty, was taken at gunpoint by three men and bundled into a car just after she left classes at the Business College on Thomas Street. At the time of her abduction, she was with her boyfriend, Joel Oudkerk of Annandale, East Coast Demerara.
The couple was in Oudkerk’s car outside the school when a dark coloured Toyota 212 motorcar pulled up alongside and three men emerged. Two of them went straight to Oudkerk’s side of the vehicle.
They dragged him from the vehicle and dealt him several lashes to his head, rendering him semi-conscious.
Another gunman who had proceeded to the other side of the car held the young woman at gunpoint and forced her into their waiting Toyota.
With Oudkerk helpless on the ground, all of the men re-entered their car and sped away. Oudkerk subsequently made his way to the headquarters of the criminal investigations department where he solicited assistance.
He was taken to the Georgetown Hospital where he received treatment for injuries. He was subsequently detained at the Kitty Police Station and then released yesterday afternoon.
As news of the abduction quickly spread, several senior police ranks converged at the home of the abducted woman from where they launched their investigations.
Kaieteur News understands that at about 22:00 hours on Wednesday night telephone calls were made from the abducted woman’s cell phone to her parents and during one of the calls a demand was reportedly made for $40M.
Wednesday night at the Kitty bar, Beharry Dookie was seen pacing up and down with two cordless phones in his hands and would occasionally stopped to speak to detectives in the popular ‘watering hole.’
As he fought back watering eyes he said, “All I want to say is that, I love my daughter and really want her back. I need you media people to assist me.”
Kaieteur News understands that the family received two more telephone calls yesterday.
A source close to the investigation told this newspaper that the callers were ‘very smart’ since it appeared that they were disposing of sim cards after each telephone call.
There are reports that persons at the Business College saw the gunmen and hid in the building as the drama was unfolding.
But an official at the college told this newspaper yesterday that she could not say for sure if anyone could give a description of the kidnappers.
“Only the person who it happened to could say what happened,” the official said.
Natoo’s bar was the scene of a brutal attack in which four persons were killed on September 25, 2003 after gunmen walked in and opened fire indiscriminately with assault rifles.
Those killed then were Gavin Narine, Joy Arjune, Lloyd Singh and a Custom’s Broker, while close to a dozen persons were injured including the then Director of Public Prosecutions Dennis Hanomansingh.
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