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Man accused of Alston E. Penn’s murder among prisoners still on the run

- other prisoners still at large are Jose Almestica & Kareem Hodge
The three prisoners still at large after escaping from Her Majesty’s Prison following the passage of Hurricane Irma on September 6, 2017. From left: Santo Yamarco Hernandez, Jose Almestica, and Kareem Hodge. Photo: RVIPF
Murder accused Santo Yamarco Hernandez (handcuffs) being taken away from the Magistrate’s Court following his first appearance on April 4, 2017. Photo: VINO/File
Murder accused Santo Yamarco Hernandez (handcuffs) being taken away from the Magistrate’s Court following his first appearance on April 4, 2017. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI– Police on October 27, 2017 released the names of the three prisoners still on the run following the passage of Hurricane Irma on September 6, 2017.

Among them includes the man accused of murdering Alston E. Penn on March 10, 2017, Santo Yamarco Hernandez.

Penn was found in a pool of blood in the Windy Hill area just before dawn. His head had a gaping wound.

The very day of the murder Hernandez left the territory for his home country, Dominican Republic, where he resided with his wife, children and mother. Here in the Virgin Islands he reportedly had another relationship which he claimed to have ended prior to March 9, 2017.

However, he apparently had no idea that police investigators were on to him and he was back in the territory on April 1, 2017 when police arrested him upon arrival at the Terrence B. Lettsome International Airport the moment he landed.

Hernandez made his first appearance at the Magistrate’s Court on April 4, 2017 and was remanded to prison.

Jose Almestica

American citizen Jose Almestica, a resident of US Virgin Islands, along with two others, was charged on August 18, 2016 with keeping a firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition and having in his possession the sum of $49,940 believed to have been of a criminal nature.

Almestica had pleaded guilty to entering the territory without permission from immigration and had allegedly attempted to escape from police officers.

Kareem Hodge

Hodge was incarcerated following a drug bust at the Terrence B. Lettsome International Airport on Beef Island in June 2017.

Some four kilograms of cocaine was allegedly found in his luggage.

Police in a press release on October 27, 2017 said the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force and officers of Her Majesty’s Prison continue to their search for three prisoners who escaped from the prison compound following the passage of Hurricane Irma.

The three are Jose Almestica, Kareem Hodge and Santo Yamarco Hernandez. Anyone knowing the whereabouts of Almestica, Hodge or Hernandez is asked to call the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force through its emergency numbers at 344-1818, 344-1822, 344-1977, 545-4866, 468-9001 or 468-9000.

Some prisoners eventually turned themselves in while others were rounded up following an operation by the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, in collaboration with Cayman Islands police officers and the British Royal Marines.

Since then 21 of the most dangerous prisoners have been sent to St Lucia to be housed at their Bordelais Correctional Facility (BCF).

16 Responses to “Man accused of Alston E. Penn’s murder among prisoners still on the run”

  • Duck1951 (28/10/2017, 08:58) Like (3) Dislike (2) Reply
    This is gross negligence and incompetence ! Heads should roll !!
    • So true (28/10/2017, 11:05) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
      Heads need to roll. Penn killer, I. bet is somewhere in NYC as we speak.
  • pat (28/10/2017, 09:28) Like (11) Dislike (4) Reply
    Ndp has not a clue of two things our finances and how to fight crime
  • 1800snitch (28/10/2017, 11:08) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    any rewards?
    • ... (28/10/2017, 13:01) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Hope when captured they will be sent to England and not st. Lucia
      • ... You got it though ? (05/11/2017, 07:55) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        You know sending prisoners anywhere is financed by tax dollars so you got that since you talking about sending them to England?! Buy me a roundtrip ticket while you're at it Big Shot.
  • Citizen (28/10/2017, 11:58) Like (1) Dislike (3) Reply

    So the police did all the hard work to help brings closure to a family, to help keep this place safe, and Foot and his incompetent prison officers let the prisoners go.

  • ... (28/10/2017, 12:59) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Surprised some fool did not blame it on the CURFEW
  • wize up (28/10/2017, 19:19) Like (4) Dislike (5) Reply
    The United Kingdom affiliates are responsible for Her majesty's prison system in the BVI; however some of we pointing fingers at our own people because the whites can do no wrong: Mr Foot along with the Governor are responsible for the security of the prison in the country: we will quickly pull down our own black sisters and brothers but time we speak about neglect by any white persons in leadership position in this territory we are somehow label a racist: how can we be racist in our own country.....yep; run quick talk that!!! 2 million of tax money went to police all now NO accountability!!!!!
    • Hornet (28/10/2017, 21:22) Like (3) Dislike (2) Reply
      @Wise Up, Put a sock in it will you. Why every comment, white have to come into play.
    • WHY?! (28/10/2017, 21:45) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
      Why everything got to be about race or nationality, some of us in this little B.V.I are some real prejudice, hateful and ignorant people. When it ain't about island people it about white people. I hope people don't think people like you represent the entire virgin islands.
    • voiceofthevoiceless (28/10/2017, 22:36) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      @Wize up. Which United Kingdom Official made a public statement that the remaining prisoners were of a low risk nature?That is a statement that can clearly deemed to an official misleading the public on a matter of public safety and national security. It is very serious. An alleged murderer is low risk? A Gun possessor is low risk? A drug smuggler is low risk?

      I argued then that if a prisoner did not turn himself in he can no longer be considered' low risk'. I also questioned why these so called 'low risk' prisoners names and photos were not released to the public?
  • Concerned (28/10/2017, 22:27) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    So why we not about an investigation or public inquiry. Lets stop guessing and obtain the truth before accusing.
  • Reader (29/10/2017, 15:26) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    @Voice of the Voiceless...You made a significant point as to whether an alleged murderer, possessor of a gun and drug smuggler can be termed as Low-risk. Thankfully your original requests to have their names and photos posted has been granted...
    • voiceofthevoiceless (29/10/2017, 20:46) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply

      "Thankfully your original requests to have their names and photos posted has been granted..."

      Albeit two months too late. Just saying.

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