The article came as a result of an exclusive interview that Ms. Imo, (a former queen contestant), gave to MiyVue.com. Given the details that she hoped to cover in the article, it became necessary to do so in two parts. The first part can be read on MiyVue.com and the link for same has been provided at the end of this story.
It was revealed in Friday’s article that Ms. Imo was cleared of any wrongdoing by a magistrate’s court in St. Kitts, with the case brought by the plaintiff and the police being dismissed, without even having the trial started and with no witnesses being called.
After being forced to go through a very embarrassing ordeal, at a time when she should have been enjoying the holidays with her family and friends, the charges against Ms. Imo were dropped. It was also discovered that two other persons were arrested and charged for the offense for which she had been wrongly accused.
However, Fatisha said that given the life-changing experience that she had to endure, she thought it was important to share her story with readers of MiyVue.com and the public generally.
Not many in public had realized that Imo was arrested twice. Most were only aware of her Thursday 15th December incarceration and not the one that followed one week after, on Thursday 22nd December, 2011. It was partly because of what happened here, that she decided that she would tell her story.
“I want to talk about my experience in that cell,” said Imo.
“The second time I was arrested I spent the night. For the first couple hours it did not hit me, it was only when my mother came and started to cry. She was crying partly because she was saying how much reports she done come in here and make and nobody do anything; but this girl could make one false report and get me lock up.”
“What happen was I was out shopping on the day, when they arrested me, with all my big shopping bags and stuff. This was on Thursday 22nd December, just after 2:00pm. I actually was walking in front of the police station, going to buy some shoes, for some show. And while I was walking, I saw the police officer who locked me up the first time, and I wilfully said hello to him. As I continued walking, I heard a voice behind me calling my name, saying Imo, Imo, Imo; but I just kept walking, increasing my pace because I said to myself ,boy not today! So I put on a speed…I knew the way he was calling me, I knew something was wrong. I did not even look back. I knew the voice and the way they were calling me I say boy, not today and I put on a speed walk and said No way!”
“I turned down Rosemary Lane and the same officer, like he wanted the whole world to know, because it was on the main road…so I buss out, what you trying to do…you trying to embarrass me…he said no, I am just trying to tell you that you are arrested. I said, arrested for what, (because a lot of people were there and I know everybody knew what was going on).”
Imo continued her story, “So he was like…all you have to do is don’t follow me and I would just charge you again. So I said ok, it seems like you just trying to embarrass me, because remember you put me in the cell last week eh. And I reminded him that when he was putting me in the cell (last week), he said ha, ha, tek dat. That was last week with the first arrest.”
Imo explained that on 15th December, while being placed in the cell, the officer told her, “You have couple hours in here”. He had it like a big joke, while I was very serious. I was not smiling,” said Imo.
As she continued her explanation about the second arrest, she said, “When we were walking to the station, I had my phone and I started to make some phone calls to my mother and lawyer. The police told me don’t use the phone but I told him you can’t tell me not to use the phone, because you ain’t lock me up yet. Me ain’t gone in the station yet; you just tell me am arrested and I need to read the paper good, (the warrant). I said first of all where is the female officer, aren’t you suppose to have a female officer with you. I am not suppose to be walking with two (male) officers you all could be carrying me anywhere. He said nothing. He was just quiet.”
“He was like, come off your phone, come off your phone, but I said I am calling my lawyer and he was like, oh well I am going give you a chance (to call). I was calm and cool because everybody realized what was going on. When I went in the station he told me he was going to allow me one more call.”
“Again I asked, so where is the female officer? After making the final call he asked that it be turned off. My mommy came shortly after. Then he started reading out my rights to me so I reminded him that he did not read my rights to me last week but you reading me my rights today.”
“Then he was telling me what I was charged for …then they locked me up. I was cool and I did not want to stress myself. They put me directly in the cell. They had me take off my earrings everything. Ah mean I was dressed and had on heels, and really dressed up.”
“I met two girls in there. The fact that I saw two girls in there I felt a little more relaxed in a sense…because I knew I did not do anything. After a while I heard my mommy come in and then she was making noise, asking how this girl getting so much powers done, despite all the reports we done mek on her?”
Imo however, was not prepared mentally for what was before her. “Time (in the cell) was going slow. Every time I checked the clock, five minutes ain’t gone yet. So I am thinking, probably I am going to get out again (released). Then when he came back I asked am I staying in here tonight, he said, ‘YES the Queen’. I said ok. So I asked where my lawyer is and has my mom arrived as yet? I was told yes, but it is too late, you have to wait until tomorrow to get bail. So I said ok, why you decide to come for me now when you had all week. Why you decide to come for me today Thursday, knowing that tomorrow is a long day, Christmas Eve? Nobody is going to be in court (meaning the magistrate for bail). So I said what were you doing all this week …he said he was drafting up his information. He said you can’t tell me how to run my affairs.”
“So because it was already after 12 noon, it was felt that no one would be granted bail until next week Wednesday, (28th December).” Thereafter Imo indicated that her photo was taken and she was processed.
“The night was long! At a point in time when my mother came I started to cry and things started to hit me and I started saying, people could go so far to try to mess up somebody character …because it did not feel like I was in there for real. It was terrible. I did not eat that whole day time. I did not eat for the rest of the daytime. I could not. My mommy was up and down trying to get the lawyer so I could get the bail, right there and then…and I did not eat until about 9 o clock, though she brought a meal.”
“I understand that all during this time, many BBs were being sent around because when I came out the next day people showed me what was being sent around,” stated Imo.
“I am concerned about certain media reports that emerged trying to paint me in a light that is not accurate and it seems designed to tarnish my character, given the lengths they have gone to.”
“I managed to sleep, but not until around 3:00am. I did a lot of crying though. It was difficult to sleep properly because there is no bed, just chairs. It was me and the two other ladies who were in there; one was pregnant at an advanced stage. I left her in there. We talked about life. I thought they would have placed her (the pregnant lady), somewhere else so that she could be more comfortable given her state, some 8 months pregnant. We talked about our incidents and generally about life. Because the time was going so slow. At times it was kinda funny because we were trying to cheer up each other. And at one point she started crying I ain’t know what she was crying for, but then I started crying too. When my mommy came by the cell, everybody started crying. It was terrible. My head hurt all night and especially when I awoke. I asked myself when I awoke…ah really here? And you know the bathrooms ain’t clean and stuff, so that too was quite an experience.”
“I don’t want to go through the experience of that cell again. The fact that I know I did not do anything and I went through that…that just changed me from even thinking about trying to get into trouble. It was a bad experience,” said Ms. Imo.
The next day brought some hope for Fatisha.
“I eventually got bail after 12 noon on Friday 23rd December. So I spent 24 hours. The funny thing is when another officer told my arresting officer that the judge was ready for us for the bail hearing, it was like he did not want us to go down (to the court house). He was like saying, who authorized for them to go down? But he was told that the magistrate said to bring them down now. I got the sense that he did not want us to go. He wanted the time to pass. He wanted us to go down in shackles and to be walked down instead of being driven down. But another officer, a female, preferred to have us driven. I got the sense that he wanted us to walk down for further embarrassment. I was with other persons who were arrested. However, also going down for bail hearing was the boy on whom the same cell phone was found.”
Imo said, “The arresting officer said there were no vehicles but eventually we were driven down.”
“When we arrived at the court house on 23rd December, I was asked to sign my bail document and was informed that I have to keep 50 feet away from her, (the lady who took legal action against me). I was like wow! Two days after the day I got bail, 25th December, the police came to my house but I was not there. I was called and told that they were there. They did not say the purpose of their visit.”
Imo therefore was able to spend Christmas a free woman and was able to stay very far from the lady who brought the charges against her, as directed by the court. However, Imo indicated that she continued to be harassed, starting the very first day of the New Year.
“On Jan 1st 2012, I got a call from the lady, threatening me as usual. I ran to the police station when I got the call because I was very close by on Fort Street. I put the call on speaker for all the police in the Guard Room to hear what she was saying. Though I was asked if I wanted to push charges I declined. This was around 5:08pm,” said Imo.
“She was like Happy New Years Day Bitch!”
“The sergeant, who was in charge and heard it, asked me what I wanted to do and I said don’t warn her or anything…just leave it.” Imo explained however, that on Monday 9th she made an official statement to the police but the report was made 1st January, 2012.”
“Wednesday 11th January was the date set for the court case regarding the charges of larceny that were brought against me. It was set for around 10:30. I got to town about quarter to 10, but while walking to the court, my brand new pair of shoes burst out on me. I called my mommy, she came back around and I took out a next pair of high heels from the car and would you believe the next pair also burst. Ah said boy no. I was called and told that they were awaiting me, though it was not yet 10:30am. So I had to go with my broken shoes, people were there laughing saying girl somebody work something on you,” said Imo, with a little laughter.
“I was like, this is strange. How could two pairs of shoes just burst like that? The second pair burst when I was walking up the steps so I had to take it off and walk without them, but was told by the authorities to drag them rather than be without shoes.”
Imo said it was impossible to drag the heels so in the end she had to take them off.
“However, when I entered the courthouse the prosecutor called me aside and told me that the charges were dropped against me. And I have to make a decision whether I want to push my charges against her, (the lady who accused her of stealing her phone). I was thinking…do I really want to? So I said I don’t really want to come back here (court) and I have school to focus on and that would mean a next case and it would mean pushing back my school and I was not inclined to do that,” explained Fatisha.
“But I did not want to make a decision until my lawyer came but I did explain the kind of stuff she does do, including making false reports; following me everywhere I go…doing all kinds of things to tarnish my character. The aim seems to be to mess up my career and character and to prevent me from entering pageants and not to graduate,” said Fatisha as she tried to find a reason for this entire nightmare.
Ms. Imo said however that she was advised by her lawyer not to proceed with any charges against her…just let this be the end of it. “There are charges against her for smashing my windscreen and threatening language against me,” said Imo.
“I told my lawyer, in whisper, I don’t have any time for this. I just want this to be the last, last.” The magistrate warned both ladies that if any incident occurs, it is likely that jail time would be a possible result.
When asked what lessons she learnt from all of this, Imo said in reply, “The first lesson is about how to stay positive, in terms of knowing who to have around you. Hearing certain things and trying to stay positive…that is a key lesson… because as funny as it may seem to some people, it was really serious.”
“Some people had this as a big joke, but it was really serious because let’s just say she had her own way I could have ended with a criminal record that could have affected me in various ways.”
“Another lesson is about choosing your friends wisely and to know who you are dealing with. Also, always having your parents by your side because you can tell them certain things about how you are feeling, because if you say it to a friend, it might be repeated and they might have it as big joke. I was really going through a lot eh.”
“People might just see me walking cool and see me smiling but under my skin it was just really hurtful that somebody could go so far. Though I was warned how far she would go I did not expect it. Through this, you really know who your friends are. The persons you would not expect to call you, are the ones who called you. Like people I been to school with and have not heard from them in years, got my number and called my phone. Telling me keep your head high. Be positive. And the people who I expected to call me are the ones who had it like a joke, laughing and saying ah good for her…shocking, shocking…am shocked with some stuff I saw. But I think basically just being positive was the most thing I learnt.”
“This has affected my character, because there was a little girl I chaperoned and she saw me and said, you thief a BB for true?”
When Imo was asked by MiyVue.com, Why she thought all this was happening to her, this was Imo’s reply, “I think it is because…ah mean, me ain’t boasting, but I think it is because of my success at my age; even though I never won a crown. To me, when certain people grudge you and despite what they do you, or say to you, you still ignore them…that is why I think she went so far.”
“I still have plans to enter Miss Universe and nobody is going to take away that dream. Even if somebody else goes before me, or even if I don’t get to go, I will always try to push my country and some girl from my country to go,” said Imo as she looked ahead to the future.
“I cried when I heard about the media reports. It might be news and entertainment to some, but I know it disturbed many. It really hurt my feelings a lot. But because of my parents, close friends… that helped me to stay strong. I was not going to give this interview to tell my story but some people encouraged me to do so and clear my name. …I needed to do something about it.
“This whole incident however has brought me and my brother much closer together, so at least one positive result has occurred,” said Ms. Imo.
“This has taught me to keep certain people out my life and to show more love for those who matter to you. Limit yourself with friends and as you get older you would learn who your real friends are,” opined Ms. Imo.
Fatisha has since returned to the US to continue her studies at university. She is due to compete in at least two international pageants later this year. She said however, that quite a number of other pageant organizers have been in touched with her, inviting her to compete in contests in Africa and elsewhere.