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Nov 1, 2017

Couple, Terrorized in Corozal Home Invasion, Packing Up to Leave

Janet & Michael McGhee

Burglars roaming in the Corozal District have traumatized the community. The latest victims of armed robbers are expats Michael and Janet McGhee. The elderly U.S. couple has been living in the quiet village of Ranchito since 2011. Early on Monday morning, however, as they slept, the McGhees were surprised by armed masked men who bound them and stole forty-six thousand dollars in an assortment of items. News Five’s Duane Moody found out that police is yet to crack this case and many other burglaries in the area.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

On Monday morning, there was a brazen home invasion in the village of Ranchito, Corozal. Expats, seventy-year-old Michael McGhee and his wife Janet were sleeping inside their bedroom when they were awakened by two armed men at the foot of their beds. Between one and two a.m., the thieves scaled the fence and ripped the lock from the front door, without a peep, before ordering the couple to the ground. They closed all the windows to the house before they carried out the heist. In the case of Michael, he was beaten on the face; left with bruises and his wife suffered a neck injury as their lives were threatened multiple times by the armed burglars.

 

Michael McGhee

Michael McGhee, Victim, Home Invasion

“They told us to get out of bed and get on the floor, which we did, and they tied us up. At that point, they began asking us for money or anything that they can convert into money. So they pointed a gun in my face and they told me if I made a sound, they would kill me.  We cooperated, just completely cooperated and at one point they told us that they wanted at least five thousand dollars and they kept asking, “Where is the money? Where is the money?” And we just didn’t have any money here really, much. And then at some point they asked where the gun is, and we don’t have a gun, but we have a pellet pistol so they took that.”

 

The frightening ordeal went on for over two hours before the men escaped with TVs, jewelry and valuable household items. To compound matters they took the couple’s 2003 Dodge pickup truck. The inventory shows that the thieves got away with forty-six thousand five hundred and eighty-five dollars in assorted items.

 

Michael McGhee

“They tied us up; they put tape across our eyes and our mouths. They took all of our TVs, our computers, her diamond wedding ring and my ring. And everything else that wasn’t nailed down and they piled it all into our Dodge pickup truck and stole that too.  I tried to remain calm, which I did, and I think that helped. They were obviously in an excited state and it doesn’t take much pressure on a trigger to…so I figured that the best approach was just to be as calm as possible, cooperate as much as we could and maybe they wouldn’t hurt us. And that worked; they didn’t hurt us. They caused some damage from the binding and on my face here and here.”

 

About half an hour after the burglars left, Janet was able to free her hands and untie Michael before they called the police. But it is believed that the couple was being monitored by professional thieves, who have been terrorizing the small village just outside Corozal Town for some months now. In the past month, several houses have been burglarized and homeowners attacked by armed burglars.

 

Michael McGhee

“They were professionals; they knew what they were doing. This is not the first time they’ve done this. They popped the…you see that dead bolt lock on this door, there is one on the other door just like that. They popped it off with a screwdriver, put the screwdriver inside and slid the deadbolt back and the door just swung open. And they did that without making a sound. We didn’t hear a thing until they awakened us at the foot of our bed. This is not the only home invasion robbery. And the police they are not doing…I can’t say that they are not doing anything, but they are not accomplishing anything, it appears.”

 

Janet McGhee

The McGhees are not hopeful that they’ll recover any of the stolen goods, and are living in fear. After making Belize their home six years ago, they are now in the process of returning to the U.S.

 

Janet McGhee, Victim, Home Invasion

“We came in 2011; to retire and we were robbed when we weren’t home the first time, October twenty-eighth, 2011. So it’s almost like October thirtieth, 2017, we are robbed again. And this time we were home and the cowards tied us up; cowards. I am more angry than; I’m pissed.”

 

Michael McGhee

“We’ve got a for sale sign out there. As soon as we can sell the house, we are gone, back to the states.”

 

Duane Moody for News Five.

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3 Responses for “Couple, Terrorized in Corozal Home Invasion, Packing Up to Leave”

  1. spike says:

    I notice all those real estate peddlers forget to mention that Belize is LOADED WITH THIEVES! If you’re thinking of buying real estate in Belize FORGET IT!

  2. eddy ferguson says:

    Belize is not the Jewel, Belizeans keep talking about. Belize, is a Crime infested country for such a Tiny country. Murders at an alarming rate, shootings, and way too many Gangs. Why would any Belizeans living abroad choose to retire back home, or people from other countries?

  3. Eye in the Sky says:

    Belize is just as dangerous as Afghanistan, North Korea, Pakistan and other 3rd world countries.
    Stay away and do not even go there for a vacation or cruise.

    Been there and done that. Glad I got out.

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