General — 15 July 2017 — by Albert J. Ciego
Faye Lin’s adoptive mother and husband charged with cruelty to a child

SAN PEDRO, Ambergris Caye, Thurs. July 13, 2017–Yesterday, Wednesday, July 12, David and Anke Doehm were arrested and charged with “cruelty to a child” in connection with the death of 13-year-old Faye Lin Cannon, which occurred while the child was in their care.

The young girl was found dead on her bed on the morning of July 3, and a post-mortem examination on July 6 certified the cause of her death as compression on the chest causing internal hemorrhage, and sexual and physical abuse. The compression was of such force that it caused three of her ribs to break, one of which punctured her heart.

The charges were brought on indictment, which means the trial will take place at the Supreme Court. This announcement was made yesterday by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution.

Police said David and Anke Doehm will be arraigned for the charges at the Belize City Magistrate’s Court, after which they will be remanded to the Belize Central Prison, to await their Supreme Court trial. There is a possibility of bail, but it is unlikely that it will be granted because of the ongoing murder investigation in which they are the main suspects, and the fact that they are foreigners allows them more opportunity to abscond.

On Monday, July 10, David Doehm, the husband of Anke Doehm, the adoptive mother of Faye Lin Cannon, was taken to the San Pedro Magistrate’s Court for unlawful possession of valium, a prescription drug. He pleaded guilty and was fined $185, which he did not pay.

The couple was taken from San Pedro to Belize City where David was remanded into custody at the Belize Central Prison.

Anke was kept in police custody to answer for pornographic materials found in her possession. She was in police custody when the order was given to charge her and her husband with cruelty to a child.

Police said that they have enough evidence to bring further charges against the pair, but are carrying out important work to further strengthen their case against them.

In response to the cruel and vicious death of Faye Lin Cannon, the Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation announced that they are grieving her demise, and that the Department of Human Services (DHS) is collaborating with the San Pedro Police in its criminal investigation.

The department said that following the detention of David and Anke Doehm by the police on Thursday, July 6, her surviving sisters were taken into protective care.

The Human Services department is also currently conducting its child abuse investigation and has referred the children for therapeutic counseling to assist them through this traumatic experience.

The department said their records show that in 2014, they received a report of improper supervision and inadequate parenting, namely that the Cannon children of San Pedro were being exposed to the elements. In a joint investigation that the department conducted along with the police, many parents, children and school officials were interviewed.

The allegation was substantiated, but there were no disclosures or indicators of any other forms of physical abuse, nor was there any evidence of sexual abuse. As such, the Department created a plan with the parents for the proper supervision of the children. The plan was monitored for adherence and the case was later closed when it was deemed that the parents had been compliant.

Since then, the Department’s records show no other reports being made of neglect or abuse of these children.

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