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Feb 10, 2020

American Woman Murdered; Boyfriend Charged with Murder

Ariana Jones

Now to a murder, a woman was brutally killed in San Ignacio, Cayo over the weekend.  Javan Moody, a man she has been dating for a few months, has been arrested and charged for her murder. Reports are that American citizen Ariana Jones was fatally stabbed in the early hours of Saturday morning. She and Moody were reportedly socializing at her home when something went wrong and she was killed. Neighbours say that they heard screams around one-thirty that morning. But police were notified of the incident some four hours later when someone called the police station to report a body inside a house. And then half an hour later, the accused showed up to give the same report.  News Five went west today to find out more about this latest murder. Here’s the story.


Javan Moody

Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Thirty-one-year-old American national Ariana Jones was stabbed to death inside her apartment in the Bullet Tree Road area in San Ignacio. A man she was dating, twenty-three-year-old Javan Moody has been arrested and charged for her murder.  ACP Joseph Myvett says that sometime around five-thirty on Saturday morning cops got a call about a body inside a house. Shortly after, Jovan Moody visited the police station to make the same report. And in less than twenty-four hours, Moody was detained, and later charged for the killing.


ACP Joseph Myvett, Head, National Crimes Investigation Branch

“As a result, San Ignacio Police accompanied him to the area where upon arrival they discovered the body of thirty-one-year-old Ariana Iris Jones, an American national, inside the apartment with apparent stab wounds and motionless.  At some point during the investigation, we had gathered sufficient evidence to institute charges against him for the crime.”


Joseph Myvett

Police say that they don’t have a motive for this murder. Information is that Jones and Moody were socializing when screams were heard coming from inside her apartment around one thirty that Saturday morning. Police say that the couple may have been drinking.


ACP Joseph Myvett

“What we do know though, from the investigation, is that sometime after one-thirty on Saturday morning, screams were heard coming from the apartment. Shortly, thereafter, the vehicle belonging to the deceased was heard driving away. I believe that a knife was recovered at the scene but we would need to get whatever was found on the knife tested to see whether or not that was indeed the weapon used. We are still trying to seek out whether or not there were any previous reports in relation to domestic violence.”


Andrea Polanco

“Sir, and at this time, do we know what are the circumstances around that altercation or what is the nature of the argument that led to that stabbing?”


ACP Joseph Myvett

“No. We do not [know] at this point in time, other than also to say that we believe at some point alcohol surfaced as a factor during the investigation.”


Darielli Groutsche is one of Jones’ best friends. She is still trying to process the news of the brutal murder of her friend. She says that Jones and Moody have been dating for only a few months. Groutsche says that she has been trying to figure out why Jones was killed because she was not a violent person.


Darielli Groutsche

Darielli Groutsche, Close Friend of Deceased

“She was such a welcoming person that you never expected somebody to turn on her like that; you never expect it to be physical violence on her like that. She would have never fought with anybody and that’s the truth.”


Andrea Polanco

“Now that you have heard that her boyfriend has been arrested for her murder, how do you make sense of this?”


Darielli Groutsche

“Ok since I know her well, I know that she and this guy were not seeing each other for long. It was not a public relationship. People don’t know him as yet but she did tell her mother.   I figure that probably he asked her for something, maybe money or to use the car or she told him that she didn’t want to be with him anymore and that is what happened. This is speculation because like I said, she is not a fighter.”


Andrea Polanco

“Do you know if it was a violent relationship?”


Darielli Groutsche

“No, but one of her friends that she recently spoke with in the states said that she had mentioned something about him being mentally unstable especially when alcohol was involved.”


Although Moody has been arrested and charged for this latest killing, Groutsche says it is no consolation for the young, productive life that was taken. Her friend’s murder brings into focus issue of domestic violence.


Darielli Groutsche

“How many years would warrant Ariana’s vital body, looking to have a child soon? She was supposed to bake cakes for my wedding. She was supposed to sew dress us. How can you put a price on that? Sending him to jail is what? But he cannot be around other women. I hope it is not a situation where I see him dating some other girl sometime soon. He is a violent person.   He needs to be convicted for doing this to a woman. This was a close quarters, domestic violence kinda situation. We need this to stop. If we don’t start putting these men away for years, then they will feel this is an easy thing to be doing.”


Ariana Jones has been back and forth between Belize and the U.S.A. in the past eight years or so. She loved Belize and was working to make this country her permanent home. Her close friends describe her as friendly, noisy and kind to everyone she knew.


Darielli Groutsche

“I will always remember Ariana being inviting to everybody. She never discriminated anybody. That is something amazing and special that I learnt from her. She gave the same respect to the little rum guys around the corner as to the top people around everywhere. Ariana read a lot of Belizean books. I have her Beka Lamb right now. She knew our national anthem. She had a lot to say about politics in Belize. She grew only native plants in her yard. She brought her friends from the states and showed them a good time and take them all over, including me, showing us a good time in Pine Ridge.”


Jones was married to Belizean Lloyden Bejerano for several years. Bejerano was shot and killed in San Ignacio in April 2019. At the time of the killing, they were separated. That murder is unsolved. Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

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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