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On trial for cruelty to a child, which caused her death

GeneralOn trial for cruelty to a child, which caused her death

by Roy Davis (freelance writer)

BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Feb. 22, 2024

Anke Doehm, 53, an American national charged with cruelty to a child which led to the death of her adopted daughter, Faye Lin Cannon, 13, is on trial before Justice Derrick Sylvester. The case is being heard by a jury of 9.

So far, the Crown, represented by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl Lynn Vidal, has called several witnesses, among them police sergeant Allan Woods, the investigating officer; two crime scene technicians, Jiro Sosa and Jason Reneau; and Dr. Daniel Gonzalez, who pronounced the child dead. The major evidence, however, came from Dr. Loyden Ken who performed the post mortem examination on the body of the child. Dr. Ken testified that he observed numerous injuries to the child’s body, and that there were signs of abuse; and the cause of death, in his opinion, was asphyxia.

The incident occurred in July, 2017, at San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, where Doehm, her husband, David Doehm and the child resided. The police reported that they were called to the scene, and when they arrived they saw the child lying motionless on a bed, and there were bruises to her legs, the right side of her head was swollen, and there was a cut wound to the right side of her head.

Anke allegedly told police that the child was mentally challenged and she would hit her head and body against the wall, and that she would stay in her room for days without eating anything. Both she and her husband told police that the child died from natural causes. But police arrested and charged them after a post mortem examination concluded that the child was abused and possibly beaten to death.

For the charge of cruelty to a child, which caused her death, they were both released on bails of $10,000 each. Then in 2018, David was found dead in a room at Princess Hotel and Casino. His death was ruled a case of suicide; but before he died he had been given custody of Faye’s three siblings, all of them younger than her.

Anke is being represented by attorney Adolph Lucas, Sr.

The trial has been adjourned until Tuesday, February 27.

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