Mother has since visited morgue, flyers distributed
NASSAU, BAHAMAS – The family members of 40-year-old Marvin Pratt are still holding on to hope.
They believe that their missing relative is still alive, and they are still holding firm to their allegations that members of the Royal Bahamas Police Force arrested Pratt last month and would therefore have some information about his whereabouts.
It’s a claim that top officials of the RBPF have vehemently denied.
Pratt’s relatives claimed that he was allegedly arrested by officers of the Central Detective Unit (CDU) last month on December 5, but he never made contact with his family and was never charged before the court.
Police officials have since claimed that there was no record of Pratt’s arrest and the family was urged by authorities to file a missing persons report.
Yesterday, Pratt’s cousin, Weniscka Rigby, who spoke on behalf of Pratt’s family, said the family’s latest attempt find Marvin Pratt led his mother, Barbara Saunders, to make a trip to the morgue at the Princess Margaret Hospital to search for her son’s body.
Her efforts, however, were futile.
“My aunt went to the morgue last week Tuesday and I built her up to go, but there is nobody there who fits his description, and they didn’t have any unidentified bodies other than a child,” Rigby said.
The family also intensified their search over the weekend by distributing two separate missing person flyers of Pratt throughout areas of New Providence.
The information on one of the flyers alleges that, “Marvin was arrested on December 5 by the Royal Bahamas Police Force who has denied arresting him. He was seen in their custody on December 8, 2018, by other people that were arrested at the time. He is still missing over a month later. If you have any information on whereabouts, please contact Barbara Saunders at 1-242-465-0007.”
Another flyer outlines a series of events that took place when Marvin Pratt was allegedly arrested. It also outlines the failed efforts of Pratt’s mother to speak with her son when she visited CDU on December 8, 2018, to inquire about his alleged arrest.
This particular flyer ends with the questions, “What did they do with my son? What has happened to my son and where is Marvin Pratt?”
When asked about the allegations on the flyer that Pratt had been spotted by other persons while he was allegedly in police custody, Rigby claimed that the family had reportedly been advised by a male who had known Pratt since high school, that he had seen him while he was being held by police at CDU.
“The person spoke with him and said he was bruised and walking in pain. We know the person was not telling a story because he was able to tell my aunt all that had happened when she was there [at CDU on Dec. 8] in search of him,” Rigby alleged. “So we know that there is somebody who saw him there on the 8th of December and that was the last time that we had any proof that anybody other than members of the police force had seen him.”
The irate relative said her aunt was advised to visit the commissioner of police to assist with her search for Marvin, but she was unable to meet with him.
Rigby said her aunt, therefore, left a letter at the police headquarters, asking that it be handed over to Commissioner Ferguson but to date, she has not received a response.
Rigby said after getting no response, the family decided to take another route.
“On Friday, we just decided to put the flyers out there to give the matter more attention because they are not doing anything about it,” Rigby said.
“As it now stands, the police are treating the matter as if Marvin just vanished off the face of the earth.”
Rigby said as it now stands, the family is hoping that they would receive a report or reports from other persons who may have spotted Marvin Pratt as that would strengthen their belief that he is still alive.
Rigby said the reality of Marvin Pratt’s disappearance, which now spans five weeks, is severely impacting her aunt.
“Every morning it hits her more and more, especially when she realizes that nothing is being done,” Rigby said. “She was OK but about it but now the longer it takes to get some answers, the more it bothers her.
“If he was dead and we had the body that would have been fine, but we are continuing to fight. She is holding up to the best of her ability but she is not doing too well.
“She also has high blood pressure and she is trying to not get to a point where she will end up in the hospital, but she isn’t doing too well because everyone is giving her the runaround.”
Since Pratt’s disappearance, organizations such as Rights Bahamas have voiced their concern, stating that if Pratt was indeed in police custody his detention is illegal and is a contravention of his fundamental rights under The Bahamas Constitution