Photo: Leslie Verde, deceased
The common-law husband of 32-year-old Leslie Verde, a mother of 3 residing in Caye Caulker, has been arrested and charged with murder.
by Charles Gladden
CAYE CAULKER, Belize District, Mon. Nov. 6, 2023
Amandala has confirmed that the Belize Police Department has arrested and charged one man in connection with the death of 32-year-old Leslie Verde, a mother of three from Caye Caulker Village, who was found motionless in a face-down position in her room by her children.
According to initial reports, sometime around 5:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 4, Verde arrived at her home after a night out and was displaying signs of being intoxicated. Verde reportedly went to take a shower, and a few hours later, between the hours of 10:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m., one of Verde’s daughters discovered their mother lying on the floor, naked and unresponsive.
Several relatives of Verde described her body as being completely purple in hue, and after contacting other family members, those relatives wrapped her in cloth and transported her body to the Caye Caulker Health Center, where Verde was pronounced dead at 12:05 p.m.
During an initial examination of Verde’s body which was conducted by the authorities, it was determined that her neck displayed bruise marks. Yet, reports suggest that there were no signs of forced entry into her home.
Verde’s body has been transported to the morgue of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where a post-mortem examination will be conducted to determine the cause of her death.
Relatives believe that the death of their loved one was not something natural, but that she was murdered. They believe that Verde’s common-law husband, whom she had been living with for the past five years, is the prime suspect; but they indicated to local reporters that the pair would often quarrel, but it had never gotten violent.
Verde’s common-law husband was being sought by police, and this evening, Amandala confirmed that 44-year-old Juan Carlos Novelo was charged with murder in connection with Verde’s death.
The island of Caye Caulker is one of the country’s townships that isn’t recognized for major crime, as the last recorded murder in that community occurred in June of this year with the shooting death of Floyd Samuels. Prior to that, the most recent major act of violence had occurred back in 2019, when the attempted murder of William Thomas took place on the island.