BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Oct. 5, 2017–David Doehm, 59, an American businessman of San Pedro who was out on a bail of $10,000 granted by the Supreme Court for a charge of cruelty to a child for the death of his step-daughter Fay Lin Cannon (who was found dead in the home of Doehm and his wife, Anke Doehm, in San Pedro on July 6), was found dead in a hotel room in the Princess Hotel and Casino in Belize City at about 12:30 this afternoon.
The hotel’s cleaners who went into the room found the body.
Police reported that Doehm was lying on the bed with a bag covering his head, and that a tube connected the bag covering his head to a small nitrogen tank.
Doehm leaves his wife, Anke, to face trial for cruelty to a child in the death of their adopted daughter, Fay Lin Cannon
Nitrogen reportedly is a gas also used to cause death by a method known as nitrogen asphyxiation, in which a person seals his head in an airtight chamber (or a plastic bag) pumped full of nitrogen gas, which causes death by a lack of oxygen. According to police, there was a note beside him, but police did not disclose the contents of the note, nor to whom it was addressed.
The body was taken to the morgue and police have ruled the death as a suicide. Police reported that Doehm checked in alone into the hotel room yesterday, Wednesday.
KREM News reported that David Doehm left his dwelling place on Reggae Street, Port Loyola, Belize City, at around 4:00 yesterday afternoon, after kissing his wife goodbye and telling the taxi operator that he was going out to sell some items. He reportedly had with him a small suitcase.
This morning, his wife, Anke Doehm, was in the Family Court where the Department of Human Services had gone to seek further protective care of the couple’s three surviving adopted children. As it stands, Anke has custody of the Cannon children, but the adoptive father, David Cannon, is trying to regain full custody.
Today, the Family Court granted the Human Services Department further protective care until further notice.
On July 6, police were called to the Doehm’s home in San Pedro, where they found the body of Fay Lin. A post-mortem examination revealed that she died because she had been severely beaten with a blunt object, which broke three of her ribs, one of which pierced her heart.
The post-mortem exam also found that she had been sexually abused.
David and his wife Anke, the adoptive mother, were arrested and charged with cruelty to a child, while police continue to investigate the death of the child.
The Doehms were released on bail and were to return to court on October 17. However, with the death of David, his wife, Anke, is now left alone to face the trial.
The cruel abuse of the child was widely known in San Pedro, and, after the child’s death, there was a demonstration by San Pedranos, who insisted that they had made numerous reports to police, over a period of time, that she and her siblings were being abused, and the police did nothing, they said.