Recent Incident In Bridgeport
BRIDGEPORT -- In the latest of several incidents of apparent occult practice in the city, police are investigating what they believe was a Santeria curse against a Derby man -- in the form of dead, headless roosters and other animal parts.
A Curse Removed, A Demon Slain
By ANDY THIBAULT, Columnist
Law Tribune Newspapers
August 2, 2004
The names in this story have been changed to protect the politically incorrect, the guilty and those with creative talent. This story, underneath it all, is about community policing. It reveals tactics not taught in any training manual. The tactics helped make Hartford a safer place, long ago, when there were regular beat patrols in the neighborhoods.
The issue of regular neighborhood beats is now in the forefront again, a year after two undercover cops were shot and other cops escaped injury from gunfire and a pipe bomb.
Our major character - a serious drug dealer, call him Julio Corvette -- had good mojo. He roamed the area of Hartford's Park Street unscathed. Julio Corvette owned property in West Hartford and Puerto Rico. He sent his kids to private schools. His wife was a high-class beauty queen. His girlfriends weren't too bad, either.
Then, something happened. Julio began to lose money. He started to look like a junkie. He would occasionally get arrested. His change in fortune came after one girlfriend, a fiery Cuban, found out about Julio's wife and other girlfriends. Her friends kidnapped Julio and took him to New Jersey. They were associated with devotees of a violent cult, Palo Mayombe, that believes in spells and animal sacrifices. They put a curse on Julio.
Palo Mayombe hit the national consciousness about 15 years ago when a college student from Texas was kidnapped and dismembered by a cult over the border in Matamoros, Mexico. The cult, heavily populated with drug dealers, believed that human sacrifices gave them a protective shield of spirits to ward off police. Ritual bloodletting, they thought, could make them invisible and invulnerable.
Authorities found more than a dozen corpses in the cult's hideout. Some had their hearts ripped out. Most were mutilated. Nearby was a cauldron filled with dried blood, a charred human brain and a roasted turtle. Other elements of the witch's brew included human hair, a goat's head and chicken parts.
Enter veteran Hartford police detective Ricardo Jiminez, a light-skinned Hispanic with some European lineage. He had seen a similar kettle of blood and gore in an apartment on East Street in Hartford. By that time, some Hartford cops already believed they had been cursed. They didn't want anything to do with the cauldron.
Jiminez put out the word he was trained as a European witch. Cursed and wracked with despair, Julio Corvette approached detective Ricardo Jiminez. Jiminez had tried for years to cultivate Corvette as a snitch.
"Help me," Corvette pleaded.
"This isn't going to be for free," Jiminez responded. "You're going to have to pay with information. And you can never do drugs again."
Jiminez allowed Corvette into his makeshift office. Jiminez cracked an egg over Corvette's head and set a photo of a goat's head on fire as the evil spirits were extracted into what Corvette believed was an aura above him. Jiminez took three pieces of Corvette's hair and chanted in Latin and German -- with a little Native American mixed in -- as he danced and hollered, throwing a pail of water on Corvette's head. He smacked Corvette in the face. Corvette looked at him, seeming to say, "Why did you do that?" And Jiminez smacked him again.
"You're cured!" Jiminez exclaimed.
"I'm cured! I can't believe it!" Julio Corvette shouted in gratitude. "Thank you, you have made a difference in my life."
From then on, Julio Corvette was drug free to this very day. He gave up several dealers. The neighborhood was a safer place, until the city cut back on regular patrols.
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