PUNTA CANA, Dominican Republic — A 67-year-old California man died in the Dominican Republic in April, just over a month before three other tourists died while vacationing there, family members said.
According to Fox News, Robert Bell Wallace died April 14, three days after he had a drink from a minibar and fell sick at Punta Cana's Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Wallace, who was in town for his stepson's wedding, was examined by a hotel doctor and later hospitalized, Chloe Arnold, Wallace's niece, told the news outlet.
Wallace's symptoms included "blood in his urine and stool," Arnold said.
"We have so many questions," she said, adding that health officials have not told Wallace's family what caused his death.
The U.S. State Department confirmed that an American died in the Dominican Republic in April but did not offer any further information, Fox News reported.
Weeks later, Miranda Schaup-Werner, 41, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, collapsed and died at the Luxury Bahia Principe Bouganville in La Romana on May 25, WLS-TV reported.
Schaup-Werner, a psychotherapist, also had taken a drink from the hotel minibar before her death, Fox News reported.
In a June 5 statement, Bahia Principe Hotels and Resorts said authorities determined that Schaub-Werner had died from a heart attack. Her husband "confirmed she had a history of heart conditions," the resorts said; however, family members told Fox News that she had been in good health.
Authorities also found that Schaub-Werner had experienced pulmonary edema, Fox News reported.
On May 30, Edward Nathaniel Holmes, 63, and Cynthia Day, 49, of Prince George's County, Maryland, died at the Grand Bahia Principe La Romana resort, which is in the same complex as the Luxury Bahia Principe Bouganville, according to WLS-TV.
An autopsy reportedly revealed that they died from respiratory failure and pulmonary edema, WJZ-TV reported. Police found medication for high blood pressure in their room but no signs of violence, the station said.
In addition, two other Americans died mysteriously last year in the Dominican Republic.
In June 2018, Yvette Monique Sport, 51, of Glenside, Pennsylvania, died in bed at another Bahia Principe resort in Punta Cana, WTXF-TV reported. She also had taken a drink from the hotel minibar the night before, family members said.
The following month, David Harrison, 45, of Maryland, died at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino – the same hotel where Wallace stayed months later, Harrison's wife told WTTG-TV.
Officials said both Sport and Harrison died of heart attacks, family members told the news outlets. An autopsy found that Harrison had experienced pulmonary edema, as well, WTTG reported.
According to CBS News, the Federal Bureau of Investigation "is assisting Dominican authorities" as they look into the deaths. So far, investigators reportedly have not found any evidence that the incidents are connected.
Cox Media Group