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New American deaths in the Dominican Republic emerge amid investigation - Metro US

New American deaths in the Dominican Republic emerge amid investigation

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At least nine Americans have died in the Dominican Republic within the past year and a half, NBC reports, two of which came to light this past Thursday — a man from Kansas and a woman from Pennsylvania.

Although these deaths are rather recent, the Ministry of Tourism in the Dominican Republic as well state department officials told press this week that there has not been an “uptick” in mysterious deaths. 

Ministry of Tourism official Francisco Javier Garcia Fernandez spoke with NBC and said, “…last three years there has been a reduction of 55 percent in the number of deaths of Americans in the Dominican Republic, including a 28 percent decrease from 2016 to 2018.”

He additionally said, “…some media outlets have categorized as an ‘avalanche’ of deaths of Americans is not reality,” Fernandez also noted that the causes of death are not “mysterious” and that all of the victim’s families have been provided with autopsy results. Despite this statement, families of the victims, think there is something off about these deaths. Most family members have reported that their loved ones were healthy before arriving in the Dominican Republic.  

Outlets reported that there seems to be no common threads between the causes of death, and officials have not confirmed any connections.  Some victims died from respiratory failure, heart attacks, fluid in their lungs, and more. The one common theme; NBC reports is that a few of the victims died after drinking from the hotel’s minibar. 

Metro reported earlier this month that the FBI  is assisting in the toxicology reports for the three Americans, who died under similar circumstances in a five-day span in neighboring resorts. 

Patch.com said that the FBI has taken drink samples from the resorts to their lab in Quantico, Virginia but the results are not currently public. 

Earlier this month, The NY Post reported that Awilda Montes, a Brooklyn woman stayed at Grand Bahia Principe resort in October 2018 ( which is is where the three Americans mentioned above stayed),  drank a minibar soda, and it left her violently ill. She recalled to The Post that she took a sip, and her mouth started “tingling” and then “burning.” Additionally, she added the details that her tongue was bleeding and her mucus was all blood. She claims she no longer has tastebuds. 

Every year Americans flock to the Dominican Republic for vacation, and this year is no exception. It is important to remain vigilant and notify authorities if anything seems off. 

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