Fortune man beaten during violent attack in his own home
Brother had gun put to his head for bank card PIN, sister says
Raelene Drake Carroll says an attack on her brother has left her wondering if people are safe in their own homes.
Michael Drake was alone at his house in Fortune in the early morning hours of Sunday, Nov. 18 when he was brutally beaten, according to Drake Carroll.
“He’s thinking that he opened the door and it was banged into his head because he had a mark right down through the right side of his head,” she told The Southern Gazette on Monday, Nov. 26, adding Drake is having trouble remembering what happened.
According to Drake Carroll, who also lives in Fortune, a neighbour visited Drake a short time after the incident and found him. She helped clean him up and he went to bed.
Drake Carroll received a call informing her what had happened later that morning and went to see her brother. She said the porch was covered in blood and the house was “ram shackled.” Her brother was in rough shape but wouldn’t go to the hospital.
That evening, he changed his mind, she said. That’s when the police were called and he sought medical attention.
Drake Carroll said her brother, a fisherman, suffered injuries to his head and back mostly. The day after the attack, Drake also had a CT scan done at the hospital in Burin.
“Nothing came back on it, which I suppose is good, but he’s having a lot of pain in his head, and he’s still got, like, vertigo,” she said.
Drake Carroll says Drake indicated at least two people were involved in the attack, but he swears he doesn’t remember who they were. She believes whoever is responsible was looking for money. When they didn’t find any, they used a gun belonging to Drake to get the personal identification number (PIN) for his bank card from him.
“The gun was put to the back of his head and he heard the gun like pump or whatever, and he remembers them saying, ‘Give me the f’in PIN,’ and that’s when he gave the PIN number,” Drake Carroll said. “When I went up that morning, there were shells on the floor upstairs and there were shells downstairs in the kitchen.”
Drake Carroll said a call to Scotiabank confirmed $500 was withdrawn from Drake’s bank account at the branch in Grand Bank at around 2 a.m. on Nov. 18.
A grey car was seen behind Drake’s house in the same time frame the attack occurred.
“Michael is quiet, he’s hard working, he’s a loving dad to his kids … and I mean there’s nothing that Mike wouldn’t do for you,” she said. “Mike didn’t bring this on himself, I don’t believe for one minute he brought this on himself.”
Drake Carroll says she’s grateful her brother is alive.
“We’re hoping time will heal. We don’t know,” she said.
Because of his injuries, Drake has missed a fishing trip.
“It needs to be out there. People needs to be aware, to be more careful, be more safe around their property and lock things that they never locked before, especially people living alone – not just the elderly, anybody is susceptible to it,” Drake Carroll says.
The RCMP issued a news release on Nov. 26, after The Southern Gazette had spoken to Drake Carroll, confirming a home invasion is under investigation in Fortune and there have been no arrests as of yet.
While Drake Carroll knows it can take some time, she and her family were dismayed the police took so long to go public with information about the attack.
In an email to The Southern Gazette on Nov. 27, Cpl. Jolene Garland, media relations officer for the RCMP’s B Division, indicated once the incident was reported to the Burin Peninsula RCMP, officers immediately began conducting an investigation.
“Public safety is paramount to the RCMP and if there was a reason to believe there was a risk to public safety that would have been addressed immediately,” she wrote.
“If no public safety risk is believed to be present there are often a large number of investigative considerations in issuing a media release and making certain information known to the public.”
This is the third violent incident in recent weeks on the Burin Peninsula. A man was found unconscious with serious injuries near Canada Post in Marystown on Nov. 1. That same week, another man was found in a ditch near the community centre in Lewin’s Cove. He had also suffered significant injuries. Police have said those two incidents were unrelated.
“Not just Fortune, but so many places, everything is gone crazy, and you just kind of got to live in it, but when something like this happens, yeah, I truly do think it needs to be brought to the public’s attention,” Drake Carroll said.
“Michael is quiet, he’s hard working, he’s a loving dad to his kids … and I mean there’s nothing that Mike wouldn’t do for you.”
- Drake Carroll
Michael Drake was attacked in his Fortune home on Sunday, Nov. 18, according to his sister, Raelene Drake Carroll.