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Sep 11, 2015

Placencia Businessman Shot & Killed…By Accident

Vance Cabral

On Placencia, a gathering of family and friends turned tragic for the close-knit Cabral families.  From all accounts, Warren Cabral accidentally shot his cousin, Vance Cabral, while the two were socializing in a boat celebrating the Tenth of September. The fatal shooting has gripped the community because the cousins were considered close and are both well known personalities on the peninsula. News Five’s Isani Cayetano files a report.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

On the calm and easy waters in the harbor at Robert’s Grove sits the Island Dancer, a luxury boat owned by a nonnational of ample means.  Inside its hull, the scene of a tragedy residents of Placencia are still coming to terms with.  Cousins Vance and Warren Cabral were out socializing earlier in the day, celebrating the Tenth of September with friends and family.  The merrymaking somehow led them to this marina several miles outside of the village proper, where Warren reportedly had access to the idle vessel.  Along with two others, both relatives continued drinking.  During their afternoon hangout a nine millimeter handgun was introduced.  Shortly thereafter, a single report.


Inspector Dennis Myles, O.C. Placencia Police

“Around 2:45 yesterday, September 10th, 2015, we received an information and as a result we visited the Robert’s Grove marina area where we observed the lifeless body of Vance Cabral on a boat with one single, what appears to be a single gunshot to his temple.”


Anecdotally, residents we spoke with off record told News Five that the well-known businessman had a habit of producing his licensed firearm while out drinking.  That practice may very well have resulted in Cabral’s demise.


Dennis Myles

Inspector Dennis Myles

“Our investigation tells us that Mr. Cabral was out there socializing with four other persons when a firearm was brandished and accidentally went off, hitting Mr. Cabral [and] fatally wounding him.”


Forty-five-year-old Vance Cabral rose to prominence in the tourism industry as owner of Advance Diving in the mid-aughts.  Despite subsequent legal woes, he was an expert angler, popular for posing with a sizeable catch in pictures taken with his many guests.  Word of the dreadful incident quickly spread across the peninsula, dampening the spirit of revelers who were also out partying.


Isani Cayetano

“I understand that in the immediate aftermath of this incident the weapon was tossed into the water nearby.  Can you describe to us to the efforts to recover that weapon from the water below?”


Inspector Dennis Myles

“Yeah, we did recover the firearm that was tossed in the lagoon by the divers from Robert’s Grove.”


In fright, Warren Cabral reportedly threw the firearm overboard.  Retrieving it from the murky water below was a snap decision made by the lead investigator considering that sedimentation, as well as the length of time it would have taken for coastguard divers to arrive on the scene, would have complicated the recovery of the weapon.  While the incident is admittedly unintentional, the matter is still being treated as a homicide.


Isani Cayetano

“I notice that on the official report that was released earlier it has it stated as a murder as opposed to an accident among friends.”


Inspector Dennis Myles

“Because the investigation is young at this time I will choose to remain silent at this time on that part of it.”


Isani Cayetano

“In terms of the investigation, are the people who witnessed the incident cooperating, in terms of assisting you guys with information?”


Inspector Dennis Myles

“Yeah, they are assisting us with the relevant information that we needed.”


Warren Cabral has since been taken into custody by Placencia police pending the outcome of their investigation, as well as a directive to be given by the DPP’s office.  In October 2005, a group of four divers went missing near Glovers Reef under the supervision of Vance Cabral, proprietor of Advance Diving.  After being adrift for fifty-five hours, Nancy Masters, John Bain and Yutaka Maeda would survive the frightening ordeal.  A fourth person, Doctor Abigail Brinkman, would perish at sea.  The incident, in a Supreme Court ruling, would later be attributed to Cabral’s negligence as boat captain resulting in damages awarded to Brinkman’s family, as well as a five-year suspension as a tour operator. Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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1 Response for “Placencia Businessman Shot & Killed…By Accident”

  1. unbelizeable says:

    idiots playing with guns

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