In 2019, there have been five deaths in the Dominican Republican and there is currently a travel advisory warning people about the violent crime on the island. Now, a Colorado couple is speaking out after they traveled to the resort where three guests have died.
According to KMGH, Kaylynn Knull and her boyfriend, Tom Schwander, began experiencing mysterious symptoms at the Grand Bahia Principe resort in La Romana. Their roomed smelled like “somebody had dumped paint everywhere.” Knull said they were drooling excessively and their eyes would not stop watering
The switched rooms but they only got worse. Knull said she had cramps that “felt like a chainsaw going through my gut.”
Knull and her boyfriend immediately left, “That night, we both woke up soaked in sweat at like 4 in the morning and kind of terrified. And we booked a flight home before the sun came up.”
A doctor in Colorado diagnosed them with poisoning from organophosphate, which are chemicals found in insecticide. Knull has been speaking out after the three recent deaths at the same resort, “I honestly believe the truth needs to be told. This sounds way too similar at the same resort.”
During the last week of May, a Black couple was found dead in their hotel room. Maryland couple Cynthia Ann Day, 49, and her fiance Nathaniel Edward Holmes, 63, were staying at the same Grand Baha Principe hotel. Their bodies were discovered on May 30, the same day they were to fly back to the United States. On Sunday, the Dominican Republic National Police determined that the couple died from respiratory failure and pulmonary edema caused by excess fluid in their lungs. Days later, it still remained unclear what may have caused their condition.
Day and Holmes’ deaths become even more suspicious after it was learned that another tourist died under mysterious circumstances at the same hotel.
Just five days before Day and Holmes’ bodies were found, a Pennsylvania woman collapsed and died at the Baha Principe hotel. Miranda Schaup-Werner, 41, checked in with her husband, Dan Werner, on May 25, the same day as the Maryland couple. Reports say after she enjoyed a drink at a minibar, she suddenly collapsed in her hotel room.
There have also been deaths outside of the hotel. Two months earlier, a Black couple from New York went missing in the Dominican Republic. Orlando Moore, 43, and his girlfriend, Portia Ravenelle, 51, had checked out of their hotel in Samana but never made it to their flight back to the United States back in March. The pair died after their car plunged off a cliff as they made their way to the airport.
According to the World Health Organization, the Dominican Republic ranked fifth in road deaths per capita in 2016.