Gov. Mapp Chooses AT&T To Interface With Public Safety, Fire Services In USVI

CHARLOTTE AMALIE — The territory is leading the way to modernize communications for its public safety community, according to a statement from Government House.

Gov. Kenneth Mapp announced his decision today to accept the FirstNet and AT&T plan to deliver a wireless broadband network to the territory’s public safety community, helping first responders save lives and protect communities.

“The United States Virgin Islands participated in FirstNet consultation and outreach activities throughout the planning of the network and reviewed the details of the FirstNet State Plan,” Mapp said. “I have determined that it is in the best interest of the United States Virgin Islands and the country to participate in the FirstNet deployment of the National Public Safety Broadband Network.”

This makes the U.S. Virgin Islands the first U.S. territory to “opt-in” to the FirstNet network.

AT&T, in a public-private partnership with FirstNet, will build, operate and maintain a highly secure wireless broadband communications network for the Virgin Islands’ public safety community at no cost to the territory for the next 25 years.

The FirstNet network will drive innovation and create an entire system of modernized devices, apps and tools just for first responders.

The FirstNet network will transform the way the Virgin Islands’ fire, police, EMS and other public safety personnel communicate and share information. Specifically, FirstNet and AT&T will:

  • Connect first responder subscribers to the critical information they need in a highly secure manner when handling day-to-day operations, responding to emergencies and supporting large events, like the Annual Carnival Festivals on St. Croix, St. John and St. Thomas.
  • Create an efficient communications experience for public safety personnel in agencies and jurisdictions across the territory during natural disasters, including hurricanes and tropical storms.
  • Enhance network coverage for first responders, residents and visitors alike across the islands and their coastlines.
  • Drive infrastructure investments across the territory.
  • Usher in a new wave of innovation that first responders can depend on. This will create an ever-evolving set of life-saving tools for public safety, including public safety apps, specialized devices and Internet of Things technologies.

Police Commissioner Delroy Richards Sr. says the FirstNet technology marks a major improvement in public safety coordination and capability.

“This is consistent with the policy of this Administration to provide not only the training our first responders require, but the tools each agency needs to more efficiently respond to public safety issues by coordinating the use of available resources,” Richards said.

FirstNet and AT&T designed the territory’s network solution with direct input from the Virgin Islands’ public safety community.

FirstNet has been engaging with Virgin Islands’ officials and public safety personnel for years to address their unique communication needs. This includes expanding coverage across the territory, enabling state, local and federal agencies to effectively communicate and coordinate over the islands, even in remote areas and coastlines.

“Governor Mapp’s decision to join FirstNet demonstrates the Virgin Islands’ strong commitment to public safety,” said FirstNet CEO Mike Poth. “The FirstNet network will connect first responders across the territory’s diverse landscape – including waterways, coastlines and island terrain. FirstNet and AT&T are pleased to have delivered a plan that meets Virgin Islands’ unique needs, and we look forward to equipping first responders with the communications tools they need every day and in every emergency.”

The decision enables FirstNet and AT&T to begin creating an entirely new wireless ecosystem for public safety communications. Virgin Islands’ first responder subscribers will have immediate access to quality of service and priority to voice and data across the existing nationwide AT&T LTE network.

Preemption for primary users over the AT&T LTE network is expected by year-end. This means fire, police, EMS and other public safety workers will have dedicated access to the network when and where they need it – 24/7/365, like their mission.

“We’re honored to bring FirstNet to the U.S. Virgin Islands and continue our more than 70-year work with the territory,” said Chris Sambar, senior vice president, AT&T – FirstNet. “This is a major step forward for the territory’s public safety community. By opting in, Governor Mapp is giving first responders access to the innovative tools and technologies they need to keep themselves as well as the residents and visitors they serve safer.”

Grenadan Murderer Rapist Kathron ‘Cuchi’ Fortune To Face Justice For Brutal Killing Of French Woman in French St. Martin

MARIGOT, St. Martin — An immigrant from Grenada will be accused in court of the brutal rape and murder of a woman who moved from the mainland of France to this tiny twin island in the Caribbean.

Kathron “Cuchi” Fortune, 39, convicted of another murder and detained in Pointe Blanche prison on the Dutch side of the island escaped on February 15, 2016 after a doctor’s appointment got him out of prison and into the sleepy neighborhood of Cay Hill.

The police manhunt for escaped prisoner Fortune ended after he was detained in St Kitts on Saturday evening.

Sint  Maarten authorities were alerted by Nevis Police Force officials shortly after the arrest was made.

Fortune fled on Monday, February 15, 2016 at about 3:30 p.m. He was taken to a doctor’s clinic in Cay Hill, when he managed to draw a firearm on the two guards who were with him at the time. He took off on foot and was picked up by an unmarked vehicle, and had been on the run ever since.

Considered “extremely dangerous”, the Grenada native was indicted in February 2016 by a judge from Pointe-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe for the murder after being accused of committing an act of “torture and barbarism” on Angélique Chauviré in May 2006.

Guadeloupe, another French protectorate in the Caribbean, has legal jurisdiction over crimes committed in St. Martin because it is too small to have its own judicial system on island.


The manager of a gift shop in Orient Bay, in the French part of Saint Martin, the 30-year-old Chauviré from Maine-et-Loire had lived on the island for seven years before her sudden death.

On June 2, 2006, her body was found by people walking near the shrubbery on Dawn Beach on the Dutch side of the island.

Fortune was accused of raping the female tourist and then stoning her to death. Chauviré’s murder was described as being “atrocious” at the time by the investigators and caused a lively debate on the twin island.

Authorities from the French and Dutch sides worked together in the investigation into Chauviré’s death as people can move freely on the 13.13-square-mile island.

According to police in Sint Maarten, the arrest of Fortune took place after information received from the Royal Police of St. Kitts and Nevis.

The Sint Maarten prosecutor ‘s office said that it would not give any “other details about the arrest of “Cuchi.”

On the other hand, police said that the investigation into his 2016 escape continues, including who helped him.

Grenadan Murderer Rapist Kathron 'Cuchi' Fortune To Face Justice For Brutal Killing Of French Woman in French St. Martin

COURTHOUSE IN DUTCH SINT MAARTEN: Called “The Tribunal’ in the local dialect.

Police Say 24-Year-Old Lyana Serieux Has Been Missing Along With Her Two Children On St. Croix Since Friday

Police Say 24-Year-Old Lyana Serieux Has Been Missing Along With Her Two Children On St. Croix Since Friday

MISSING: Lyana Serieux, 24, and her two male children Jordan, 10, and Jeremiah, 5.

FREDERIKSTED — The Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD) is asking for the public’s help to find a missing young St. Croix woman and her two male children.

Lyana Serieux, 24, who weighs about 140 to 160 pounds, has black hair, brown eyes and a brown complexion, was last seen on Friday, July 28 driving a 2011 Silver Toyota Yaris with license plate number is CFR 304, VIPD spokesman Glen Dratte said.

Serieux had her two children, 10-year-old Jordan Serieux and 5-year-old Jeremiah Serieux with her when she was last seen at the Lagoon Street Complex in Frederiksted headed towards their home in Cane Estate, according to Dratte.

Police investigators have discovered a badly burned Toyota Yaris that could be the missing woman’s car, but the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) was partially destroyed and cannot give detectives confirmation that it is Serieux’s vehicle, Dratte told the Virgin Islands Free Press this morning.

The VIPD said that it has been diligently searching for Serieux since Sunday and the department has asked volunteers to meet with members of the Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) to participate in the search for the missing woman and her family.

Dratte said that Police Commissioner Delroy Richards Sr. will conduct a press conference at 10:30 a.m. today to discuss the disappearance of Serieux and her two boys.

A person on Facebook called on the community to come to Camp Arawak to continue searches along the beach in that area.

“VIPD can’t do it by themselves and there are children missing,” the person wrote. “We have a lot of other people missing over the years whose family are still grieving with no closure so let’s stop the talk and typing and try at least to stop the trend of sitting back and doing nothing.”

On LinkedIn, Serieux says that she works for Kmart Corp. and lives in Estate Kingshill.

The VIPD is asking anyone who knows of Serieux’s whereabouts to please contact them immediately at (340) 778-2211 or by contacting the anonymous tip line Crime Stoppers USVI at 1(800) 222-8477 or by calling 911.

Police Say 24-Year-Old Lyana Serieux Has Been Missing Along With Her Two Children On St. Croix Since Friday