April 15, 2024

Columbus Post

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Pirates may have thrown a pair of American sailors overboard


GrenadaThe fleeing pirates threw a pair of American sailors overboard

A retired American couple on a yacht in the Caribbean were attacked and killed by three criminals. Now charged with murder.

Felix Draper
  • In February, the yacht “Simplicity” disappeared from its anchorage in Grenada, along with sailors Kathy Brandl and Ralph Hendry.

  • Three days later the sailing vessel appeared at St. Vincent. Three robbers were arrested.

  • All three have now been charged with murder: the culprits allegedly threw the sailors overboard en route.

Three people have been charged with the double murder of two American citizens who disappeared in the Caribbean two weeks after their stolen boat was found. The three suspects, Ron Mitchell (30), Trevor Robertson (23) and Atiba Stanislaus (25), were taken into custody Thursday in a court in Grenada, the island state police announced.

They are accused of stealing the catamaran “Simplicity” owned by two American sailors, Ralph Hendry and Kathy Brandl. While in port the men hid in the boat and restrained the couple. While they were at sea, the miscreants allegedly threw the pensioners overboard. In “Simplicity” there were traces of a fierce fight – apparently Hendry and Brandl were defending themselves against their murderers.

Battle marks on sailor ship

According to police, the trio escaped from a police station south of Grenada's capital, St George's, on February 18. They were detained on suspicion of robbery, and Stanislaus was charged with rape. Three days later, the three were recaptured in the neighboring island nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. They reportedly went there in a stolen boat.

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The victims are yet to be found. The couple's sons started one Call for donations via Gofundme. Apparently, according to their sons, the couple spent their retirement aboard. The Salty Dog Sailing Association described Hendry and Brandel as experienced sailors who had participated in last year's Caribbean Rally from Hampton, Virginia, to Antigua and planned to spend the winter sailing in the Eastern Caribbean.

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