Woman is Tobago’s 11th murder for the year: Killed 3 days before birthday

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

MURDERED: Jenelle Thomas-Stowe, 39. –

A Tobago mother of two was found murdered on Tuesday morning, three days before her 40th birthday, in what police say is a case of domestic violence.

Head of the Tobago Division, ACP Collis Hazel, confirmed to Newsday the perpetrator surrendered to police and allegedly confessed to the murder. He surrendered at the Shirvan Road police station in Mt Pleasant.

“At this point in time, the matter is under investigation and we treat each murder seriously,” Hazel said.

“Therefore, we will be doing a thorough investigation despite the fact that the perpetrator has been arrested. We look forward to an outcome where he can be brought before the courts.”

Jenelle Thomas-Stowe, 39, lived with her children, a 16-year-old girl and a ten-year-old boy, and an extended family at Signal Hill, Tobago.

She left home on Monday at around 8 pm without telling anyone where she was going, but saying she would return. They realised shortly afterwards that Thomas-Stowe had left her phone at home which they said was something she rarely did. Her family was awakened by police on Tuesday at around 6.30 am and told her body had been found at Gleneagles Drive in Mount Irvine.

Relatives were shocked as they assumed she had returned home during the night and was asleep in her room. There were unconfirmed reports that her body was found burnt and with the hands tied.

A relative said they were told a man whom they knew to be a friend of Thomas-Stowe arrived at a police station in her car and allegedly confessed to killing her. ACP Hazel did not confirm if the suspect drove to the station in Thomas-Stowe’s vehicle.

“I do not have information he did that. I know he appeared and gave himself up.”

Hazel said he was saddened by the incident, even as the TTPS and other agencies try their utmost to educate the public on domestic violence.

“We continue to sensitise, educate and try to be a catalyst for change. We will continue to utilise all areas (to try and educate the public).”

Thomas-Stowe, a janitor at Connect TT Bon Accord office, was going to host a charitable event for her birthday.

A relative said she planned to celebrate turning 40 by feeding 40 underprivileged families and had even started gathering the items. Thomas-Stowe is the eleventh person killed on the island this year.

Hazel said the police’s victim and support unit will be providing counseling to Thomas-Stowe’s family.

On November 6, mother of one Chiniqua White, also called Chin, was shot and killed in a drive-by shooting in Black Rock. White, 34, who was from Malick, Barataria, died while being treated at hospital.

On September 30, Canaan Feeder Road resident Rae Ann Henry, also known as Lucy, was fatally stabbed about the body after having an altercation with another woman. She was taken to the Scarborough General Hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries.

There were ten murders in Tobago in 2022. The murder toll in TT has crossed 500.

Editor’s Note: This is an update to an earlier story published online. The original online story can be read below:

A Tobago mother of two was found murdered on Tuesday morning, three days before her 40th birthday.

Jenelle Thomas-Stowe, 39, lived with her children, a 16-year-old girl and a ten-year-old boy, and extended family at Signal Hill, Tobago.

She left home on Monday at around 8 pm without telling anyone where she was going but said she would return.

They realised shortly afterwards she had left her phone at home which they said is something she rarely did.

Her family was awakened by police on Tuesday at around 6.30 am and told that her body had been found.

Relatives were shocked as they assumed she had returned home during the night and was asleep in her room.

Reports say her body was found tied up and burnt.

A relative said they were told that a man they knew to be her friend arrived at a police station with her car and confessed to killing her.

Thomas-Stowe, a janitor at Connect TT Bon Accord office, was going to host a charitable event for her birthday.

A relative said she planned to celebrate turning 40 by feeding 40 underprivileged families and had even started gathering the items.

Her face was burnt beyond recognition but her family was able to identify her through several distinguishing features, including a growth on her ear and her hairstyle.

Police have not told her family the motive behind her killing or what happened but the suspect is believed to be assisting with investigations.

Thomas-Stowe is the eleventh person killed on the island this year.