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May 14, 2019

In Toledo, a Woman is Killed by Her Common-law Husband

Francisca Caceres Duarte

The mother of a two-year-old child was fatally shot down south; she is the second woman in twenty-four hours whose life has been cut short in violence. This morning, a Honduran national was rushed from her home in Big Falls to the Punta Gorda Hospital where she was pronounced dead on arrival. Police are not calling it murder, but all indications are that Francisca Caceres Duarte was murdered. She and her common-law husband, a tour operator, have been involved in a rocky relationship. As recent as Monday evening, the couple was in a domestic dispute. She left the house and went to her sister-law. She was shot inside her bedroom in the early hours of the morning, just before dawn. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Thirty-one-year-old Francisca Caceres Duarte, a Honduran national, was fatally wounded during a shooting incident inside her bedroom early this morning. At around 3:30 a.m., a single gunshot was heard from inside the residence, a home she shared with her common-law husband, Andrew Caliz, near the bank of the Columbia River. According to Martina Caliz, the couple was having a misunderstanding on Monday evening when Duarte stopped by to inform her of what had just taken place. They spoke casually before Duarte returned home later that evening. That was the last conversation she had with her sister-in-law. She woke up this morning to news of the tragedy.


Martina Caliz

Martina Caliz, Sister-in-law of Deceased

“When I hyah dis probably round five o‘clock this morning, [my brother] Estevan called me and ih seh, “Martina, Andrew do something wrong.”  I tell ahn, “What happened?”  Ih seh ih kill ih wife.  What?  I left shocked because I said what, it cyant be.  He said, “Yes, she is dead.”  Well then I woke up, I got and I told my son, you know, what happened down there.  He said, “Oh my.”  We heard that Andrew ker his lady to PG.”


By all accounts, the relationship between Caliz, a well-known tour operator of Big Falls, Toledo District, and Duarte, a Honduran national who had been living with him for the better part of two years, was rocky. Caliz’s elder sibling attests to the many times when he would turn on his wife in a fit of rage.


Martina Caliz

“Di lady does go more often, go leff ahn seka problems.  But when she go so and then she woulda come back, maybe two, three days, when she come back and she come ya and she seh, “Friend, I gaan but I come back again.”  I tell ahn, “Why you noh tell me when you go or something happen or problem?”  She seh she noh got time fi come tell me ya because she haftu run and ketch ih bus before Andrew come find ahn ya, because if ih find ahn out deh with di valise ih put ahn een back.  So yesterday she was here with us.  I was chopping the yard and she was talking with [my son] Roni.  She was so happy, she would look so happy.  She was laughing and after I finished chopping, I come and she she “You‘re working too hard” and I tell ahn, “Yes, I have to.”  Then she said, “I am here because we’re having problems down there and maybe by coming or by going somewhere then she would relax a little bit then she would go back.”


The official report filed with Punta Gorda police is that Caliz and Duarte were getting ready to travel to Belize City this morning and whilst in the bedroom, Caliz’s firearm, a .380 pistol, accidentally discharged. The round from the single blast caught Caceres in the right shoulder near the neck, mortally injuring her.


Martina Caliz

“When I went there, I went there, but I didn‘t went there when the police dehn mi di deh.  But afterwards when the crowd, when I went down there and I asked David [Franco] to open the cabanas so that I see what happened, the sheet was messed up with blood.  The floor was messed up; the wall was messed up with blood.  I said, “Oh my, it’s very hard for me because she was a good, good girl.”


While the unfortunate incident has been classified as an accident and is being probed as a death investigation, family members aren’t entirely convinced.


Martina Caliz

“Andrew rail up with that girl for only simply cooking food.  Maybe an egg is not fried good, you know, people from Cross, you know they cook different from a Belizean and for that, just little thing like that.  I tell him why he doesn‘t teach her to cook before he rail up or want to hit her or something like that.  Teach the lady to cook. In his business he doesn‘t have a license, number one.  He doesn‘t have any license.  Telling you the truth, I didn‘t want to say this part but, you know, it‘s something that he wanted the license for this land, but the license for his bar, but they didn‘t want to give him but he is trying for so long.  He wanted everybody to come together and sign a paper so that he can get a license to have his bar.  One day I tell him, “Andrew, you can have your license but you have to have your sister or brothers working together.”  That‘s what they tell me in Belmopan.  Ih seh, “No, I don‘t believe that.  I don‘t want no brothers and sisters working with me.  That‘s my business and I…”  I said yes, I know it’s your business and we are not telling you to give us what you make from your business but if you want your license to go through a process and the process is something like this, if this land is not his, how will he ever get a license?”


Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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