A determination to have one last big night out on Roatan before flying home to British Columbia proved fatal for a Canadian tourist in October.
According to police reports and accounts from witnesses and acquaintances, Themy Alexandre (Tim) Vallee-Apostolakis, 34, of Abbotsford, BC, had been on Roatan about a week visiting a Canadian friend who maintained a vacation home here. He planned to go home Thursday October 18 and return to his job at the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.
Vallee’s final Facebook post indicates he was watching the Honduras-Canada World Cup qualifying match at the Coconut Tree in West End the afternoon of October 16, observing wryly that maybe Canada should stick to hockey. Later he was at a bar further down West End Rd. telling people this was his last chance to party on Roatan. His Canadian host said he parted company with Vallee about 9:30, according to the Canadian warden. Vallee, who by then had moved out of his friend’s house and checked into a West End inn, wanted to stay out.
The owner of the bar said Vallee drank for several hours, and as the midnight closing time approached he looked for companions to go with him in search of an after-hours venue. A bartender at the bar, who had befriended Vallee during his stay and gone out with him after closing hours before, agreed to go and persuaded three other customers, all local women, to accompany them.
The bartender said the five of them got into a cab, and the driver suggested a bar outside Coxen Hole known as “La Cueva,” which he said would still be open. There were many patrons there when they arrived, he said, but Vallee didn’t like the place, which is in a shanty area at the end of an unlit winding dirt road, and after about 15 minutes he wanted to leave.
Vallee and his companions exited La Cueva about 1 a.m. to look for a cab to take them back to West End, the bartender said. He said he was negotiating the fare with a cabbie when Vallee and the three women walked up ahead toward the main road. He then saw a white pickup carrying two men he had seen inside La Cueva pull up next to Vallee and apply its brakes. An Hispanic man stepped out with a gun and, according to police reports, demanded Vallee’s I-Phone.
The bartender said he started toward Vallee to help, but before he could get far a shot was fired, Vallee collapsed, and the women ran screaming, “They shot Tim!”
Vallee’s companions placed him, shot through the head, in the back of a pickup belonging to another patron and took him to Roatan Hospital, where he died about two hours later, the bartender said.
At press time, police were looking for an Olancho man suspected of firing the shot, who they said had fled to the mainland. An island man suspected of being the driver was arrested October 18. [/private]