The Horrifying 2006 Murder Of Stacy Wilson

The following article includes descriptions of violence against women. 

The brutal murder of 21-year-old Stacy Wilson remains one of the most heinous crimes ever committed on the Caribbean Island of Saint Vincent. On the evening of December 11, 2006, ST Hint reports Wilson was riding a public transport van, as she was traveling from her workplace to the home she shared with her mother. According to witness reports, 35-year-old Sean Samuel boarded the vehicle, forcibly removed Wilson, and attacked her with a machete. The onlookers were terrified when Samuel used the machete to brutally dismember Wilson and ultimately behead her.

In the course of the investigation, authorities learned Wilson and Samuel were distant cousins. As reported by ST Hint, the cousins were both raised outside the capital of Saint Vincent in a small town named Vermont. As they lived so close, the families spent a lot of time together. However, things changed when Samuel seemed to develop an inappropriate obsession with his younger cousin. 

According to Dicy Trends, Wilson's mother, Emelia Nanton, said Samuel made it clear that he was in love with Wilson and planned to marry her. However, Stacy simply was not interested in that type of relationship with her cousin. Nanton said she forbade Samuel from visiting the home for some time, but he was allowed to return when he apologized for his inappropriate comments. 

Sean Samuel had a criminal history

Despite his apologies, Samuel's obsession with his cousin only seemed to escalate. On one occasion, Emelia Nanton said Samuel refused to leave her home until she was forced to throw bleach in his face. What's more, Nanton said the older man continued to proclaim his love for Wilson and eventually began sexually assaulting her.

As reported by Searchlight, Samuel had a history of criminal behavior and mental health issues. During Samuel's eventual trial, Dr. Amrie Morris-Patterson testified that Samuel began using marijuana at the age of 10. At the age of 25, Samuel was admitted to a mental health facility after suffering an acute psychotic episode, which included delusions.

In January 2002, Samuel was arrested for breaking the window of a bank. When questioned by authorities, he said he was being persecuted by law enforcement and other residents of Saint Vincent because he was Muslim. In Samuel's opinion, everyone believed he was somehow related to Osama Bin Laden. As he seemed to be having mental health issues, Samuel was admitted to a mental health facility for 20 days.

In the hours prior to his attack on Wilson, several witnesses reported seeing Samuel at the hospital where his cousin was working. Searchlight reports Samuel was trying to get Wilson's attention. However, as she continued ignoring him, Samuel eventually left.

Wilson left work at approximately 3:45 p.m. When she boarded a public transport van, Samuel boarded the same van and sat in front of Wilson. Witnesses said Samuel began verbally harassing Wilson and she was eventually forced to move to a different seat.

Sean Samuel decapitated Stacy Wilson in front of onlookers

While the van was stopped at another bus terminal, Sean Samuel continued harassing Stacy Wilson. She ultimately walked to the front of the van to sit behind the driver, in an attempt to dissuade her cousin from bothering her. However, as reported by Searchlight, the harassment only intensified.

Mavis Alexander, who witnessed the horrifying incident, said Samuel pulled out a machete, which was concealed in his clothing, and began slashing at Wilson. Alexander said she ran out of the van for her own safety, but she saw Samuel pull Wilson out of the vehicle as he continued striking her with the machete, cutting off a hand and her head. Searchlight reports Samuel remained at the scene until authorities arrived and was arrested without further incident. 

During the subsequent police interview, Samuel asked for an attorney and simply said he was being targeted because was Muslim. During Samuel's trial, Searchlight reports his defense attorney, Stephen Williams, suggested his client may have attacked Wilson during a psychotic episode and pointed out that Samuel had been hospitalized for mental health concerns on more than one occasion. However, during cross-examination, Dr. Amrie Morris-Patterson said it was unlikely. In her opinion, he seemed to be alert during his entire police interview and clearly expressed his preference to have an attorney present — which suggested he was aware of his rights.

Sean Samuel's death sentence was reduced to life in prison

On October 15, 2008, Sean Samuel was convicted of the murder of Stacy Wilson. However, as reported by Searchlight, his sentencing was delayed pending a psychiatric evaluation. According to The Netline, Samuel was initially sentenced to death. However, his attorney filed an appeal on the grounds that he had a diminished mental capacity when he committed the crime. The appellate court ultimately granted the appeal and Samuel's sentence was reduced to life in prison.

While Samuel was convicted and sentenced to live out his days in an island prison, his sister likewise committed murder in New York in 2013 when she killed her boyfriend and their 1-year-old son before ending her own life, according to iWitness News. Stacy's mother reacted to that news by saying, "Everybody meeting me and telling me how God answers prayers and what goes around comes around. This thing happen to Shorn's [Samuel's] sister, and you're looking for people to say we have to forgive each other and pray for one another, but some people acting as if I was praying for something bad to happen. Stacy has died already, I accept it. I am trying to move on with my life, but some people just making me get sad because I am trying to get over the loss of Stacy" (via The Netline).