BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Jan 20, 2022– The Leader of the Opposition, Hon. Patrick Faber, is once again being accused of domestic assault after his fiancé, Dr. Shanikka Arnold, filed a report with the Domestic Violence Unit yesterday, following a dispute with Faber. Today, the Commissioner of Police, Chester Williams, has confirmed that indeed such a report was filed, and he further informed the public that a warrant has since been issued for the arrest of Patrick Faber. All indications at press time, however, are that he has still not been detained or surrendered himself to police.
Today, COMPOL Williams further revealed that he received a call from attorney Richard “Dickie” Bradley, who informed him that Faber had made contact with him in an effort to arrange a meeting, likely to retain his legal services, and he, Bradley, had also indicated that Faber, would be surrendering himself sometime this afternoon. As mentioned, there is no indication if this has taken place as yet, but late this evening, the complainant, Arnold, issued a release of her own after reportedly withdrawing all charges against Faber.
In her statement published on Facebook she states, “Firstly, we begin by saying that the situation is a misunderstanding, one that really is a matter that we have been dealing with privately.” As mentioned, she has written to Commissioner Williams to request that the charges against Faber be withdrawn. Williams, however, seems to be insisting that the matter be addressed in the courts.
”If she were to recant, she would have to do that at the courts. The fact is that we have obtained a statement from her in which she has requested court action, and so we will proceed with the matter before the courts, and if she decides later on that she does not wish the matter to go any further, then we will suggest that she goes to the court and do that, and not through the police. Again, with these domestic issues, we tend to at times downplay them, underplay them, and then it turns out to be worst at the end of the day. In order for us to make sure that should something serious happen down the road, we can always say that, yes, the lady came to us, we did our part, but then she went to the courts and XYZ, and our hands are clean.” Commissioner Williams shared.
This means that Faber is likely to be charged with the offense of assault and damage to property and will appear before the court before any charges can be dropped.
According to the COMPOL, Arnold first lodged an informal complaint to the police on Monday, following what is believed to be a disagreement between the couple. By Wednesday, tensions within the relationship had apparently escalated so much that Faber, according to some reports, used a hammer to injure her hands, destroyed her laptop and reportedly slashed the tires of her vehicle. Reports are that she escaped using Faber’s vehicle and made her way to the Queen Street Police Station. Her injuries have been classified as harmful.
Yesterday, Arnold’s attorney, David Morales, and Dr. Carol Babb, Secretary General of the UDP, who is a close ally of Faber, were seen at the Queen Street Police Station. Reports were that some associates of Faber were attempting to convince the complainant not to press charges. According to the COMPOL, however, if this is the case those persons could likely face charges related to tampering with a witness.
COMPOL Williams said that the victim had a visible bruise on her face, said to be have been caused by a door that hit her during a struggle with Faber.
In her Facebook statement, Arnold states, “I would also like to express my dissatisfaction with the spread of rumors via social media and traditional media houses, because it only served to make this situation that much more difficult to navigate. While I appreciate the support from many; in the future, it is my hope that our privacy is respected as we navigate our personal lives together and apart. “
COMPOL Williams has stated that they try their best to respect the wishes of the complainant. “As much as yes, we know that situations may exist where the complainant may be reluctant or be fearful to cooperate due to the influence they believe the person of influence may have. We must as best as we can, do what we can to assist those complainants, so in situations where statements are given and it is categorically stated in those statements that they wish court action, then we will process to put the matter before the court.”
This recent allegations against Faber could permanently end his leadership of the United Democratic Party—which he barely succeeded in holding onto after a recall petition, orchestrated by the UDP Caucus for Change, that had led to a recall convention in July of last year. Faber needed the votes of at least a third of the delegates at that convention—162 votes, and he was able to secure 226 votes, 64 more votes than what he needed. He had also been ousted from his post as Leader of the Opposition after.a parliamentary maneuver by Mesopotamia rep Hon. Moses “Shyne” Barrow, but had been able to reclaim his seat as Opposition Leader in the House after securing the support of Hon. Hugo Patt and Hon. Tracy Panton. Those events had been triggered by the circulation of a video in which Faber appeared to be mistreating the mother of his 2-year-old daughter. Faber had been receiving counseling and making progress in regaining the support of the faction that attempted a coup against him when this most recent incident occurred.
Faber, in a public statement released today, said, “While we had hoped that such a matter in the public domain could be avoided, we realize regrettably that the inferences and insinuations deriving from the visit to the Queen Street Police Station yesterday, Thursday, January 19, 2022 have now made it necessary for the situation to be publicly addressed.
“We begin by stating that the situation is a misunderstanding, one that really is a matter that we have been dealing with privately. It is our intent to do whatever it takes to keep our family together. While we can assure the public that the rumors are inaccurate, we are at this time unwilling to disclose further private information in order to protect my fiancé from public scrutiny.
“My number one priority at this time is my fiancé’s wellbeing and the wellbeing of my entire family.”