Posted: Tuesday, June 6, 2023. 4:17 pm CST.
By Aaron Humes: The Police called it a mischievous act. But 22-year-old Kailee Perez, a new mother of a four-month-old baby girl, says it was her way of seeking help – and avoiding killing herself and her two children, the elder being a boy of two years of age.
Perez admits she deliberately and falsely told police that she had been robbed on May 26 near the corner of Vernon Street and Magazine Road by two armed men of her purse and $150 cash. But the alternative, she told our court reporter on Monday, was killing herself and her two children because of crippling depression and suicidal thoughts. She thought police would see right through the report and dig a little deeper, but she wound up being charged with committing a mischievous act and brought to court.
Perez appeared before Magistrate Khiana Gordon and pleaded guilty, but after hearing her explanation, the Magistrate declined the plea and ordered that she be psychiatrically evaluated. Bail was offered and met of $800 and the case was adjourned to August 2, pending a report from the Port Loyola Clinic where mental health evaluation is offered.
Perez explains, “It happened between the time when I had my child and a month after, and my emotions were down; I felt depressed and I had instances whereby I didn’t want to be here. And for a month it was off and on again and for the past three weeks now it has been getting worse. So the day when I went to do the police report, I decided to go there because I had my mind set on taking my life and my kids’ life.”
A candid Perez detailed why she felt uncomfortable getting help: “I don’t know why I class myself as a burden to others, but that’s how I feel. Like there’s always this lonely feeling, like no wants to [assist or] help, but it’s not because they don’t want to help, it’s because they don’t know what’s going on. And I don’t feel comfortable bringing up every single feeling that I have to everyone I know. I’m not that open to letting them know what’s going on inside my mind, and I guess holding all that information in [did it] for me and that’s what I was going to do when I got home. So instead I just went to the police station and made a report, hoping they would recognize right away that it was a false report and detain me under supervision until my mind was clear.”
Perez says she was trying to find someone outside of her immediate family who she could trust to get her out of her situation. She says she had felt normal after having her son, but the birth of her daughter was “complicated” and that she lost “a lot” of blood during the delivery.
For information on available services in your area from the Belize National Mental Health Program from the Ministry of Health and Wellness, visit their Facebook page, which was updated just today.
Unfortunately there is no national hotline available. However, services are provided 24/7 throughout the entire country via all the public hospitals if there is a need when the clinics are closed after 5 p.m. and on weekends. Services are provided at the Accident and Emergency Unit at each hospital in these instances.
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