United States

Tourist Shot in the Caribbean Flown to Fort Lauderdale Hospital

An American tourist who was shot during an armed robbery while vacationing in Turks and Caicos was recovering at a Fort Lauderdale Hospital Monday.

Family members said Kevin Newman was on vacation with his wife and son when he was shot early Friday. The Alabama man underwent surgery before he was flown to the U.S. and admitted to Broward Health Medical Center, where he remained in serious condition.

In a Facebook post early Monday, wife Tiffany Newman said her husband was off a ventilator and was able to communicate.

"He was very emotional and tearful. He seems to have a VERY clear memory of what happened to him and I can only imagine the terror of this ordeal," she wrote.

Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police officials said officers responded to the shooting around 1:43 a.m. Friday in the Grace Bay area of Providenciales. Police said Newman was shot in the abdominal area.

"It caused damage to his liver, but the main issue was that it hit his inferior vena cava and right kidney vein. He lost a very large amount of blood so he received lots of transfusions," Tiffany Newman said in a statement.

Newman underwent surgery and had been in a medically-induced coma at the islands' Cheshire Hall Medical Center before he was flown to South Florida, according to a GoFundMe posting.

Police said no arrests have been made in the shooting, which remains under investigation.

Officials with the Turks and Caicos Ministry of Tourism released a statement about the shooting Monday.

 "We are shocked and saddened regarding the incident that occurred on one of our islands, in the early morning of June 23, involving a visitor to the destination. He and his family continue to be in our thoughts and prayers while doctors continue to monitor his recovery," the statement read. "A criminal act, whether against a resident or visitor, is never something taken lightly and there is a heightened and concentrated effort to identify the individual(s) responsible. The Turks and Caicos Islands are a popular and peaceful destination known for its pristine beaches and relaxed atmosphere and this type of occurrence sends a ripple through the entire community. The safety of all those on these islands is always our top priority and remains as such. The Ministry of Tourism is in complete cooperation with our acting police commissioner who has increased visible security."

Officials said a member of the tourist board stayed by Tiffany Newman's side until her husband was flown to the U.S. and that they remain in constant contact with the family. They also made travel arrangements for Newman's son, Gavin, to return to the U.S.

"Words can't begin to express how thankful we are to each and every person that has given anything to our family. This has been so traumatic, but it has also been so comforting knowing we have so much love, support, and prayers for us," Tiffany Newman said in the statement.

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