Majestic Resorts Responds To Violent Incident Reporting
Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw
Facebook posting by an American tourist who claims she was beaten and left for dead by a staff member at the Majestic Elegance resort in Punta Cana went viral over the past week, creating a furor and generating responses from the destination’s Minister of Tourism and the U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic.
Majestic has now released a statement suggesting that Tammy Lawrence-Daley, the guest who reported the incident, which occurred on 29JAN, only went public with the story after not getting a “positive response” to a demand for US$2.2 million in compensation from the hotel company.
The statement also insists that Majestic “rigorously implemented the security protocol provided for cases when information is received of a guest in trouble.
Some of the details of the story are also in question.
"There is a lot of conjecture about the case, a lot of information that doesn't match some of the statements," Durán said Friday. "We have to wait for the investigation to end."
In its statement, Majestic also called for patience while the investigation is ongoing: “Some news media sources in the United States have reported on the story considering her accounts as true and definitive, without listening to the authorities’ version, or waiting for a final resolution of the case.
“Majestic has no opinion on the hypothesis of some authorities involved in the investigation, who consider that the story of Mrs. Lawrence-Daley while she was in the hospital, at the hotel and during conversations with police and prosecutors, presents contradictions and confusing facts, casting doubts on her testimony and leading to believe that information on the case is being concealed by blaming a hotel employee.”
Majestic states that it “continues to cooperate with the local authorities in the open investigation until they can provide a final official declaration.”
Robin Bernstein, the ambassador of the United States in the Dominican Republic, Robin Bernstein, called the incident “an isolated event,” while saying “our heart is with the families of the victims.”
Violence and crime at resorts in Mexico in the Caribbean has been a hot topic of late, with suggestions that the tourism industry and local politicians often play down the problem in order to protect the tourism industry, a critical source of revenue.
In the age of social media, stories of violence, sexual attacks and thefts spread quickly, making the industry and destinations vulnerable if they are not seen to be tackling the issue with the seriousness it deserves.
Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief
An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.