American Missionary Killed With Arrows After Trespassing On Indigenous Island

Indian authorities have repeatedly told missionaries not to make contact with the Sentinelese and other Andaman tribes.

An American missionary looking to share Christianity with an indigenous tribe on the Andaman Islands was killed after trespassing onto their land.

John Allen Chau was shot and killed by arrows from the Sentinelese of North Sentinel Island, the Associated Press reports. The 26-year-old is believed to have been killed on the weekend of Nov. 16 after he made several attempts to visit the isolated tribe. Dependera Pathak, director-general of police on India’s Andaman and the Nicobar Islands, told reporters seven fishermen were arrested in connection to Chau's death after they helped him trespass onto Sentinel Island.

Chau visited the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in 2015 and 2016, but it wasn't until last month that a friend of Chau's hired the fisherman to take him and his kayak to the island. The group was paid a reported $325 for the assignment.

After his kayak was damaged, he tried again on Nov. 16 to reach the island. The actual date of the murder is unknown but the fishermen watched the incident as they waited for Chau in their boat. The news of Chau's death was told to his friend who then informed his family.

Pathak says Chau's death cannot be confirmed until they recover the body. “It was a case of misdirected adventure,” Pathak said.

The history of the Sentinelese people has been widely regarded as one of the oldest living paleolithic people. Historians believe the group was one of the first to migrate from Africa and have been on the island for over 60,000 years. Other Andamanese tribes like Jarawa and Onge are also along the island but the Sentinelese are known to be the most hostile due to European colonizers attempting to study the people and reportedly kidnap them.

Over the years, some anthropologists have tried to visit North Sentinel Island but have been met several times with arrows. A documentary released in the '90s revealed Indian government anthropologist Triloknath Pandit's (or T. N. Pandit) brief interaction with the group. Speaking with The American Scholar in 2016, the retired Pandit shared his thoughts on the journey.

"That voluntarily came forward to meet us – it was unbelievable,” he said of the interaction.“But there was this feeling of sadness also – I did feel it. And there was the feeling that at a larger scale of human history, these people who were holding back, holding on, ultimately had to yield. It’s like an era in history gone. The islands have gone. Until the other day, the Sentinelese were holding the flag, unknown to themselves. They were being heroes. But they have also given up."

While his interaction with the Jarawa tribe was laxer, the Indian government placed restrictions on island visits. In 2006, two fishermen were killed after their boat accidentally floated in the vicinity of the island.

Organizations like Survival International, have pressed the Indian government to work on stricter laws to protect the indigenous tribes from those prying into their lives.

“This tragedy should never have been allowed to happen," they said in a statement. "The Indian authorities should have been enforcing the protection of the Sentinelese and their island for the safety of both the tribe and outsiders. Instead, a few months ago the authorities lifted one of the restrictions that had been protecting the Sentinelese tribe’s island from foreign tourists, which sent exactly the wrong message, and may have contributed to this terrible event. The Sentinelese have shown again and again that they want to be left alone, and their wishes should be respected."

Chau's family hasn't made a public statement about his death.

READ MORE: Tupac’s Estate Teases New Mystery Release

From the Web

More on Vibe

: Michael Jackson leaves the courtroom on a break at the Santa Barbara County Courthouse for the second day of closing arguments in his child molestation trial June 3, 2005 in Santa Maria, California. Jackson is charged in a 10-count indictment with molesting a boy, plying him with liquor and conspiring to commit child abduction, false imprisonment and extortion. The jury is expected to begin deliberations on the case later today. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian-Pool/Getty Images)

HBO Wants Court To Dismiss $100 Million Lawsuit Filed By Michael Jackson’s Estate

HBO wants a California court to toss a $100 million lawsuit brought on by Michael Jackson’s estate over the Leaving Neverland documentary. In a motion for dismissal filed Friday (Aug. 16), the cable network alleged that the estate's lawsuit violates the First Amendment.

“Plaintiffs’ claims fail because they violate the First Amendment, Due Process Clause and public policy, and in any event, the contract on which they are based is inapplicable and expired,” the motion states.

“California’s Anti-SLAPP law empowers—indeed requires—this Court to put an end to this litigation now,” the document continues.  “Accordingly, the Court should strike Plaintiffs’ Petition and claims with prejudice, and award attorneys’ fees and costs to HBO pursuant to the anti-SLAPP law’s mandatory attorneys’ fees clause for prevailing defendants.”

The Jackson Estate sued HBO in February, ahead of Leaving Neverland’s March premiere. In the Emmy-nominated documentary, accusers Wade Robson and James Safechuck, claim Jackson sexually abused them when they were boys.  The estate argues that the documentary breached a 1992 non-disparagement agreement between the network and Jackson, who died in 2009.

HBO’s motion maintains that the “only possible reason why Plaintiffs filed their Petition in court was to attract maximum attention to their public relations campaign against Leaving Neverland and the documentary subjects.”

In a statement to Deadline, a rep for Jackson’s estate slammed the network’s allegations. “There is no expiration term in the contract, nor does it terminate as a matter of law. Likewise, the First Amendment does not protect HBO from willfully and blatantly violating its contractual obligations, as it did here. The Estate of Michael Jackson is confident that HBO’s latest attempt to avoid its contractual obligations will fail.”

A hearing in the case is scheduled for Sept. 19.

Continue Reading
Getty Images

California Woman Claims School Bully Left Son With Permanent Brain Damage

A Southern California mom says her son suffered permanent brain damage after a violent run-in with a bully, CBS Los Angeles reports.  The woman, identified only as “Sarah” to protect her and her son’s identity, is suing Animo Westside Charter Middle School in Playa Vista, California, over a 2018 altercation in which her son was attacked by a bully and placed in the school office for several minutes before paramedics were called.

Footage of the altercation was caught on the school’s surveillance cameras and appears to show her 12-year-old son getting off the bus before being approached by a larger student. The apparent bully punched her son and put him in a chokehold.

Ben Meiselas, a lawyer representing the family, claims the bully did a YouTube search for “the most painful pressure points on the neck” prior to altercation. A school staff member can also be seen walking by as the boy is being attacked. The boy is eventually brought inside the school.

Staff members realize that the boy is hurt and take him into the school’s main office to lay him on the floor. The boy suffered a seizure in the office, and lost consciousness twice, the lawsuit states. School officials are also accused of failing to call paramedics for several minutes.

“By the time I get there, I’m thinking paramedics [arrived] and he’s going to have help,” said the boy’s mother. “My son is literally laying there still in the middle of the office floor completely black and blue.”

Despite viewing video of the altercation, the school district has yet to apologize to the victim and his mother, Meiselas said. “The fact that they can watch that video and not so much offer an apology is really, really, really disgusting.”

See more in the video below.

Continue Reading
Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for The Reform Alliance

Jay-Z To Reportedly Become Part Owner Of NFL Team

It’s been a whirlwind few days for Jay-Z and the NFL, and it seems that the relationship could run deeper than their recently announced partnership. According to TMZ Sports, Jay is in line to own a “significant” portion of an NFL team.

Although it's unclear which team he plans to purchase, a source told the website that the deal is expected to be secured in the “near future.” The Brooklyn native allegedly wants to buy into a team because he’s a “huge fan” of the league, and already works in the business by way of his Roc Nation Sports imprint.

The source added that Hov “wants to continue to be a change agent for the NFL,” and that the deal doesn't conflict with him owning a sports agency because he's not involved in the “operations of NFL players” on the Roc Nation roster.

Jay previously owned a small stake in the Brooklyn Nets, which he sold in 2013. The timing of the potential team purchase comes as Jay continues to receive backlash after formally announcing his collaboration with the league. The decision to partner with the NFL was “partially motivated” by Jay’s desire to own a team, according to Bleacher Report.

During a press conference alongside NFL commissioner Roger Goodell earlier in the week, Jay was asked if Colin Kapernick (who remains without a job in the NFL after launching a protest against police brutality) knew about the partnership. Jay initially told reporters that he spoke with Kapernick about working with the NFL but the athlete's girlfriend, radio personality Nessa, denied that the conversation took place. She also expressed her disappointment with how the partnership is being promoted.

“The disappointment in Jay-Z isn’t in the partnership. The disappointment is wrapping it in social justice,” Nessa told Hot 97 Wednesday (Aug. 14). “I don’t mind you doing a business deal, but I do mind you wrapping it in social justice when you’re working with an organization that denies someone an opportunity.”

 

Continue Reading

Top Stories