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Apr 30, 2013

Father of slain toddlers responds to allegations of bad parenting

Thomas Teul the second, the father of the three murdered children, is making funeral arrangements to lay them to rest. The triple murder of the children ages one to four years has stunned the nation and has sparked questions about the mental health of the mother and domestic abuse.  Teul the second, is the estranged common-law-husband of Felicia Chen, who was arraigned for three counts of murder on Monday afternoon after she caused the drowning of three of her four children on Saturday at Belizean Beach. Teul, who lives in Ladyville, says he is no saint, but that his tumultuous relationship with Felicia, did not warrant or lead to the killing of their three children.

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

The unimaginable killing of four-year-old Triana Teul, three-year-old Thomas Teul and one-year old Trinaya Teul, at the hands of twenty-two-year-old Felicia Chen, has sparked controversy as to the root cause of such monstrosity.  Prostacia Chen, the children’s grandmother, has placed blame on the father, who was reportedly in an abusive relationship with Felicia.

 

Prostacia Chen, Grandmother

Prostacia Chen

“The relationship was in and out [off and on].  It was in a violent, she was in an abusive, violent relationship because she came here in January because I lately asked her how much months she was staying with me and she said, “in January I came here.”  The man is there yes, working at Ready Call but he doesn’t give enough money to my daughter.  He only gives little, what he have or whatsoever he makes, not even enough.  Twenty dollars noh wahn put you nowhere with di children dem and these children are very smart.  My grandchildren are very smart.  But the father doesn’t look like he’s interested eena di education and eena di relationship because he’s not like wahn fada weh love ih kids to me.”

 

Today, Thomas Teul responded to allegations made by the family about his involvement in the lives of his four children, as well as the relationship Felicia shared with her mother and siblings.

 

Voice of: Thomas Teul II, Father of Deceased Siblings

“For sure I know dat dehn always argue with ih ma, ih sistas, ih breddas, you know, always bring she down to di lowest.  Whatever she try do, whatever she try, all she wahn do da help me get outta di bills.  She ask her ma fi babysit, she neva could do dat, nobody could neva watch di [pickney fu she.]  All she ask da mek somebody babysit for she, you know, she always want help.  She want help, she want move because she tired ah live deh.  She seh she cyant live deh.  She woulda prefer stay da my ma house than fi stay da her own ma house because ah di way dehn treat her.  Dehn already know she noh got no money like dat financially but yet dehn woulda harass ahn every minute, every day when dehn wah get di money.”

 

According to Chen, a court order was granted to keep Teul away from her daughter.

 

Prostacia Chen

“She did get wah restraining order one time because my daughter used to work da Chon Saan [Palace] so but right now she stop due to the condition ah weh she deh up here because di bus stop like 9:30 and the restaurant close around mostly eleven or twelve.  So that’s why she had to, you know, stand back.  And he ihself jealous affa my daughter.  Ih noh want ahn fi work, ih jealous affa ih co-workers dehn.  Ih beat ahn up cause ah that so she stop and I tell ahn maybe ih good fi stop mek ih sih ih children dehn because ih need you too but he’s not doing his job.”

 

For his part, Teul has also admitted to physical abuse but he believes that wasn’t the trigger that led to the fatal outing.

 

Voice of: Thomas Teul II

“Fu be honest, I noh a perfect man or anything like that. I do got my ups and downs with her, but we always work it out every time. I can’t say everything dah their fault. I know I wrong too. If I mi just take her out when she asked me to because she mi done tired of staying there. She mi done tired of being harassed everyday as she wake up. Every day it was a routine; every minute, every day.”

 

Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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26 Responses for “Father of slain toddlers responds to allegations of bad parenting”

  1. Storm says:

    However the fault should be divided between these people, it’s a sad story, and probably the seed of the problem was a 15 year old girl getting pregnant and having 4 children before she turned 22. There are some important lessons here for other families to warn their children about having babies when they too young and too poor to care for them. Like too many other Belizean girls, the mother created a trap from which there seemed no escape.

  2. Retired CEO says:

    Ironically, it is amazing that men who abused women will always claim that they have work things out with the victim only to repeat the same abusive behavior over and over, time after time, in order to get their own selfish needs met. As a former mental health professional I have heard this same tune sung by some very sick abusers, who have many issues of their own to deal with. If this individual abused this young woman physically, emotionally and psychologically it is more than likely he was abusing her sexually with the propensity of doing the same to the children. Clearly it appears as if the Grandmother was being somewhat protective of the minors by not allowing him to see them whenever he wanted to.

    Very sadly so, these are some of the many child/women protective services that our society/GOB should be providing for the populace of nameless/faceless Belize who are victims of abuse in every sense/meaning of the word abuse. Additionally, our society appears to be a very uncaring callous and vindictive.

    Finally, the biological Father should be equally held responsible for this crime. He should not be allowed any contact with the surviving child until further notice. In the event the child would like to see him, the visits should be appropriately supervised by a social worker/human welfare professional. Furthermore, the young woman should not have contact with the child without professional supervision. The biological mom should be kept in close proximity for her own physical and mental health well being. The bottom line appears to be that she was driven by her lover and some significant others into committing this horrific crime.

  3. Retired CEO says:

    In the event that this bio-father would be held equally responsible for this crime it would send a very strong message to men who violently abuse women and children. That message would be that the court/society will not tolerate this sort of wreck-less and blatant abuse in any shape or form. Men need to be held responsible for their families and the children’s welfare/family well being.

    While we cannot legislate morality, we can certainly hold dead beat Dads and potential abusers accountable for their behaviors. The strong must protect the weak. It is moral and spiritual responsibility in every civil society. Stand up Belizeans! Lets make an effort to clean up our society in a caring responsible manner.

  4. nicholasa says:

    Show the dead beat dad’s face…why protect this irresponsible male..Men need to be real fathers and since parenthood is an equally shared responsibility he is equally responsible for the tragic death of his children, His neglect and abuse is what drove this poor mother to hopelessness and depression. In her deeply disturbed state of mind she saw death as the only way out for her and her children. Institutionalize her for psychiatric treatment and therapy and send him to jail…

  5. ceo says:

    Another first in Belize!

    A very sad story!

    I hope this tragedy will cause other young females to think about the effects of becoming a mother while yet a child.

    I also hope elceted officials are paying attention and work on getting the necessary social programs in place in an effort to stem this probelm.

  6. BT says:

    so why does he have to hide his face? if you are such a good father then man up and face the country.

  7. truth says:

    I think we are disregarding the fact. The fact is that Ms. Felicia Chen had no right much less an excuse to kill three innocent children. What we need to remember is that Ms. Felicia Chen had choices, choice to leave the relationship if it was abusive, take the father to court if he was not maintaining his children.
    I honestly believe that anyone who is out there criticizing the father for what he may have done or may not have done, base on the comments i hear, is in agreement with the mother which means you are condoning or accept the killing of those children.
    No man is perfect, we do and say stupid things and we make foolish decision at times. I am not defending the father and for sure i will not criticize him but again who am i to? I am not perfect either but as I said this is not about any of the parents character, it is about a choice that was made to Kill three Innocent Children.
    I think these are the questions we need to ask …

    1. who’s decision it was to kill these children
    2. who killed the children
    3. what state of mind was the person in (keep in mind that there is a thing we call premeditated murder. meaning that the person had time to thought out what he or she will do.)
    4. what JUSTIFIABLE reason is there on this earth for ANYONE to kill an innocent child much less three.

    let us stick to the FACT!

  8. hilario wewe says:

    my comment on this issue, parent have fault on those two guys,, parent to blame, why parent tolorate teenager to married young teenager does’nt have knowledge to mantain there own self,, why something like this have to happen in this planet, why,, i’m so sorry what take place ,, i’m praying on those kids ,, i love them so much, they are so cute, i’m not close on there family but my heart feels very emotion with them ,, when i sees there photo,, i know these little ones are in gods hands,, belizean people we need to make this sociaty a change.

  9. disownmicountry says:

    Well said retired CEO. I agree. Speaking SD a medical profession all, do you think that Belize has people with the proper credentials & expertise to take care of these cases? Just asking. I was educated in Belize then moved to the US where I further my education. The teaching and training is not the same. Of course, this some many years ago.

  10. Arthur S says:

    At CEO, yes, factors caused people to do certain things, however, I think your statement is ridiculous in having the father to be charged equally for the murders committed by the mother. She obviously required some treatment but she did the crime and is fully responsible for her own actions. Having the father held accountable is really an unjust comment especially if you don’t know the circumstances around the matter.

  11. sandy says:

    Lets get some programs going to educate these young women about birth control and where they can get it for free if its not free already young women have to step up and be responsible for them selves ,if they are in an abuse relation ship seek help turn those monsters in and the law need to deal with them like yesterday the leaders need to get from behind their desks and reach out the community and listen to the cries of the people that need help. SAVE THE CHILDERN

  12. jill says:

    how can the father be held equally responsible for this crime,that suggestion is unrealistic , as worthless as they say he was, at the end of the day he didn’t aid her in the crime, his hands are legally clean.everyone likes to play the blaming game, the kids have suffered at the hands of the the person who should be comforting and protecting them,This is pre- meditated murder, she had to catch a bus,drive all they way to belizean beach, whichis, a long enough distance away to think and change your mind, Just walking infront of the sea her instinct should have kicked in, to not go through with it, she could of even stop at the sight of seeing them struggle for air but nope she fallowed through so i believe she should get dealth with accordingly , when it come to 3 little deffenseless kids life being cut short by the very same person that brought them here i could never understand, i have 3 young kids and the pressure of it is sometimes feel almost unbearable but never does it cross my mind to kill them,

  13. joe lopez says:

    I totally agree with you CEO that irresponsable father should be held responsable too! What I think is thst this poor mother was tired of the poverty and abuses that she and her kids were living! I do not support what she did, but I think this guy need to be charge for domestic abuse and for irresponsable with his kids!

  14. CET says:

    Y do we have people like them??? we should start to apply the dead penalty in this country!! we need to stop this… come on people!! boys n girls think with the head n not with the toe !!

  15. not again says:

    It dont matter what we say. The crime is done. The kids are in a better place. The mother will go to rock view for a few years. The father will be having kids with another woman ( if not now) maybe thats why he dont show his face. And the grand mother will keep on doing what she knows best NOTHING. My prayers for the girl that survived.

  16. macal rivera says:

    THIS IS INDEED SAD SAD!!!! I CAN’T IMAGINE THE SUFFERING OF THESE CHILDREN IN THEIR LAST MINUITES OF LIFE, FIGHTTING TO BREATH, WOW.
    YES, I HOPE THIS IS AN EXAMPLE TO OTHER YOUNG PEOPLE, WHY HAVE CHILDREN WHEN YOU CAN’T TAKE CARE OF THEM? YOUNG PEOPLE NEED TO EDUCATE THEMSELVES, FIND A JOB AND THEN HAVE KIDS THEY CAN TAKE CARE OF, YOUNG PEOPLE NEED TO BE PREPARED MENATLLY AND PHYCOLOGICALLY BEFORE THEY HAVE CHILDREN, FOR PARENTING IS A BIG RESPONSIBILTY.
    SO IN THIS CASE I BLAME BOTH MOTHER AND FATHER, I BELEIVE THEY WERE NOT PREPARED TO BE PARENTS, THE EXTENDED FAMILY TO BLAME ALSO, YES I KNOW THE GRANDMOTHER TRIED TO HELP HER DAUGHTER BUT MAYBE THE RESPONSIBILTY WAS TOO MUCHFOR HER, IT’S NO JOKE HAVE TO FEED FOUR MORE MOUTH INCLUDING THE MOTHER, ALL BECAUSE OF THE DEADBEAT FATHER, SO SHE ABUSE FELICIA TOO, AND DON’T FORGET THE FATHER WAS INDEED AN ABUSER, HE ABUSE THE WIFE AND HIS CHILDREN. YET I FEEL SAD FOR THE MOTHER, I IMAGINE SHE HAD ENOUGH, ALL THE DOORS WERE CLOSE TO HER AND THIS WAS HER ONLY WAY OUT. SHE REALLY NEEDED HELP.

    BUT MOST OF ALL I BLAME THE SYSTEM, SO MUCH MILLIONS SPEND ON TRAINING AND TRAINING AND STILL, WOMEN WHO NEED THE MOST ARE LEFT ASIDE, THEY ARE THE LEAST IMPORTANT TO THE SYSTEM IS, (WHO THE HELL CARES), UNTIL SUCH TRAGEDY HAPPEN THEN WE SEE ACTION.

    FELICIA HAD A RESTRAIN ORDER, ACCORDING TO HER MOTHER, WHY THE SYSTEM NEVER INTERVENE TO TRY HELP? WHY THE SYSTEM NEVER ORDER THESE PARENTS TO GET COUSELING? WHERE WERE THE SO CALLED HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP? WHERE IS THE CHILDREN RIGHT GROUP? HUMAN DEVELOPMENT? WOMEN RIGHT GROUP?

    WHERE, WHERE WHERE???
    AT LEAST WE KNOW WHERE THOSE LITTLE ANGELS ARE? IN HEAVEN, WHERE THERE IS NO MORE PAIN AND TEARS, MAY THEY REST IN PEACE.

    ONE THING I KNOW FOR SURE, FELICIA, THOMAS AND THE EXTENDED FAMILY WILL NEVER BE IN PEACE AGAIN.

  17. just the truth says:

    its 2013, the entire country of BELIZE without a PSYCHIATRIST, not one nada ,zilch. where is the planning for human resources in the Minstry of Health. they have a Policy Analysis and Planning Unit, with a staff of administrators that cost taxpayers millions yet we have NO PSYCHIATRIST for the entire country, we are in bad shape people.

  18. counselor says:

    It is a sad reality that our system sucks. As a school counselor for the past 10 years I can tell of the countless horrors our students suffer. Physical, mental, financial, sexual.. you name it. And as counselors we have to work with these students to get past the hurt and pain, and to see hope in the future …. there is no place in Belize for them to go… they cannot leave their homes so they must stay and learn how to deal with their situations. We cannot play the blame game.. only God is judge, he alone knows the countless tears and frustrations that have occupied the mothers thoughts and dreams…. where could she turn? The system does not work. as a single parent myself I know that the system does not work when the court will award you $50 a week to mantain two kids who you spend hundrends on a monthly basis…. so where do you turn? This is a wake up call.. instead of investing millions sending ceo and pm and ministers out of the country every single week invest in human development and homes and education for young women and mothers who are frustrated and longing for a way out.. yes they made bad decisions and the consequences are there but do we leave them to suffer in agony and encourage the cycle of poverty and disgrace to continue or do we help them to pick up the pieces of their lives and try to reach out to the poor innocent kids…. as someone who has done some psychology I know about depression. I know what it can lead to…. sadly we take it as a joke not realizing the dangers of depression and the amount of our people that are depressed. its time to stop judging and time to start helping… those who had seen the signs and saw what the lady was going through could have been there to listen, to give a little helping hand, … sadly we wait too long and when tragedy happens then we are quick to blame… unless you have walked in felicia chen’s shoes … let God be her judge.

  19. HENRY says:

    This is such a sad issue for the family of the victim,the father and the citizens of Belize on a whole. Everybody has problems at home and there are different ways to deal with them. Before we talk we should realize what we do as individuals.My advice to the teenagers of Belize is that each one of them should abstain from negative things and this won`t be an issue in your life. Youths of Belize think positive and live happy. I don`t think anyone of you want to be in this kind of situation.Indeed it is a serious crime this mother did.As an individual I have been through this situation but I must say that with prauers God will help you.Let God be the first person in you life and allow him to be your guidance not satan.Only God can judge Me and you,so let God judge her on what she did to her innocent children.

  20. shy says:

    It is unbelievable how this worthless man who beat up the girl and did not give her sufficient money to feed his own kids tries to blame her family as tho it is there obligation to feed and mind and maintain his kids. Mr. teul needs to realize that they were his and her kids not anyone elses and it is there responsibility and obligation to feed and mind those kids not anyone else but she couldnt work and do her part because the abuser that he is he stopped her from doing so, so if anyone is to blame it is him.

  21. alex pow says:

    this is a sad feeling for young dad like me because there no such thing like this would happen if u got lord da father almighty in heart my feeling goes to da babies they are beautiful angels let the dad go to jail for not standing frim beside his love ones esp. the babies may the have them in peace sorry sorry to hear something like that no more youngster should have sex

  22. Anita says:

    The sad thing is that the mother is defending her daughter! her daughter killed her own kids.
    now she is misplacing AND “JUSTIFYING A CRIME” Don’t think so. DONT Blame the “Dead beat father”! he did not killed his kids she did period. every body now this days, want to blame it on “mental illness” BS for lack of Control when it come’s to children. why didn’t she killed her self? ill tell you why she was angry and took it out on this baby’s. I hope the beat her to death in jail or just kill her the same way she killed her kids. what a disgrace of mother and her mother for condoning its very offensive disgusting. she should never come out to defend her daughters actions how DARE HER. and STOP with the excuse she had kids at a young age and SNAPED at the age of 22 . I am a Mother too and upset’s me , why couldn’t she gave this baby’s to people who would love them as their own?

  23. i grew up with her says:

    It truly is a sad story, my condolence go out to him and her family. I knew her family all my life and her dad was a really good man! sometimes you got to actually know people first before you cast your judments. as a single father and a i keep those three little angels In my prayer and especially for the surviving baby that she may get the right therapy to get her through witnessing such a grisly act

  24. Annie cruz says:

    The dead beat father, woman beater if that’s the” case”! he abused her. its a (” cycle “) of abuse.
    but when its comes to the killing innocent children. who just LOVE YOU BACK . how can any person do that? she is Evading punishment she killed does baby’s. NOT THE FATHER!
    as for her the ” MENTAL ILLNESS ” BS…. she is maniacal and manipulative and she will probably get away with MURDER. while she is eating 3 meals A DAY. why didn’t she killed her self? ill tell you why she took her anger out on does little kids. as for her mother to come out and blame justify condone her disgusting daughter actions. its offensive how DARE HER. why couldn’t she reach out if her daughter was having a hard time. ill tell you she did a poor job her self and failed her daughter pathetically. should she be BLAMED TOO? she is quick to blame the father. how about accountability on her daughters actions. hope the inmates beat her to Death. and please stop blaming it on METAL ILLNESS she is a sinister disgusting human being. death penalty period.

  25. Lily says:

    Women in Belize needs to be educated further about signs and types of abuse. Sadly its a society that I hope would change from young girls getting married too early or older men visiting the family pretending they are Gods gifts to women…. Young women need to empower themselves in education and be independent before any one tells them other wise. Imagine you are 22 with four pickni. Its not easy if you can’t take care of yourself then don’t have kids you can’t care for. Sad sad day ateast call social workers to pick them up then again not sure how all that works in Belize.

  26. august says:

    if the husband no that the girl was living a mest up life why didnt he just try to help his wife and stop being a drunky now wen things had happen you se him cring now wen he should have cry he didnt now that its too late he’s cring i think he’s the one that should be in jail or in crazy house but wat she did i cant belive that but the 2 of them needs to go to jail together because he is just like her well he let she did that so i think that he should be in jail.

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