Vancouver woman hospitalized in Mexico after being assaulted by stranger
What was supposed to be a week of relaxation in Mexico has turned into a nightmare for a Vancouver woman.
Jamie Coutts, 27, and her friend Genevieve Thomas, flew to Playa Del Carmen last week to get away from the cold winter weather in B.C.
On Sunday night, the pair, along with two other women they met on the trip, were walking back to their hotel after spending the evening in town. That’s when Coutts said a stranger who had previously approached the women at a bar, continued accosting them.
“We pretty much told him to beat it, and he didn’t like that response,” said Coutts.
She says the man charged towards them, punching her and Thomas in their faces and leaving them unconscious.
“I (regained consciousness) in a taxi with a Mexican woman holding me, covered in blood, with her saying she’s taking me to the hospital,” Coutts said.
Coutts suffered a broken nose and tooth, and required multiple stitches for a laceration around her eye. Genevieve required stitches for a gash on the back of her head that she suffered after being punched to the ground.
Coutts said the suspect was arrested that night, and police in Playa Del Carmen told her he is a Canadian man.
CTV News reached out to Global Affairs Canada, but the agency would not provide details on the incident, only saying they are aware of a Canadian being detained in Mexico, and are in the process of gathering more information from Mexican officials.
The attack is the second troubling encounter Coutts has had with a stranger this year. In March, she recorded a stranger following her on foot through downtown Vancouver for 40 minutes. The man, eventually identified as Vancouver resident Mohammed Majidpour, received a court order to stay away from her.
Saturn Rose, a close friend of Coutts, said dangerous encounters with unknown men are a harsh reality for many women.
“It could have easily been me,” she said. “It’s so devastating. (Jamie) goes to Mexico to have fun with friends and ends up with a broken nose and her eye swollen shut. She’s trapped in Mexico now.”
Coutts was supposed to return to Vancouver on Dec. 8, but doctors won’t let her fly for at least another week.
“(Doctors) want to make sure no blood clots happen while I’m flying,” Coutts said.
Medical officials in Mexico told Coutts her nose will require reconstructive surgery. Because Coutts doesn’t have travel insurance, Rose has launched a GoFundMe campaign to help with the expenses.
“If people want to support the GoFundMe, you don’t even have to donate, you can just share it,” said Rose. “Sharing is so important because it reaches people and gets the news out there that this isn’t OK, and we need to support the women in our community.”
As Coutts waits until she’s medically clear to fly back to Vancouver, she’ll have to pay out-of-pocket for at least another week to stay at a hotel in the resort town. On top of that added expense, Coutts and Thomas are both concerned that their injuries will keep them from being able to go back to work right away.
“Neither of us have the means to be here for longer, or to come home and not be able to work and pay our rent,” said Coutts.
Vancouver Top Stories
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Trudeau decries 'fringe' views of some in trucker convoy, as police prepare for its arrival in Ottawa
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is decrying the 'fringe' views among some of those who are supporting the trucker convoy making its way to Parliament Hill to protest COVID-19 vaccine mandates and other policies they feel infringe on their freedoms.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on Wednesday the extension of Operation UNIFIER for three years, and the deployment of 60 more troops to Ukraine in the coming days.
CTV News in Ukraine | 'If I'm called, I will go': Ukrainian reservist and former Voice contestant ready to fight Russian threat
CTV's Omar Sachedina speaks to a Ukrainian reservist and former contestant on Ukraine's version of 'The Voice' about the looming threat of war with Russia.
Crushing poverty is forcing displaced people in Afghanistan to make some very desperate choices, including selling organs or even their own girls into marriage to adult men.
'So many angry people': Experts say online conversation around trucker convoy veering into dangerous territory
As a growing group of truckers and supporters make their way to Ottawa in a protest against vaccine mandates, experts say the rhetoric online concerning the convoy is getting increasingly worrisome.
The Public Health Agency of Canada says it has detected more than 50 cases of a new Omicron subvariant known as BA.2. The subvariant is widely considered 'stealthier' than the original version of Omicron because some of its genetic traits make it harder to detect.
From the deadly crushing of Beijing's 1989 pro-democracy protests to the suppression of Hong Kong's opposition four decades later, China's Communist Party has demonstrated a determination and ability to stay in power that is seemingly impervious to Western criticism and sanctions.
Homicide investigators have been called to a Richmond, B.C., duplex after a shooting that left four people dead.
Police say a series of stabbings in the downtown core last month have been determined to be hate-motivated and targeting vulnerable Calgarians.
Five deaths related to COVID-19 were confirmed in the Vancouver Island region Wednesday, according to the B.C. Ministry of Health.
British Columbia's forest watchdog has identified four key areas where the management of forestry practices can negatively affect water and outlines potential opportunities for the province to improve regulations.
The British Columbia government says it will distribute up to 250,000 rapid COVID-19 antigen tests to provincially funded child-care providers.
Tuesday’s report of 1,377 COVID-19 patients in hospital was revised to a pandemic-high 1,443 on Wednesday.
'People are fed up': convoy of trucks converges on Ottawa as police prepare for thousands on Parliament Hill
A convoy of hundreds of fed-up Canadian truckers are driving cross-country, heading for the nation’s capital to deliver a message that's raising millions of dollars from donors around the world.
Work is underway converting a vacant Seventh Avenue Calgary office tower into 82 units of affordable and specialized housing.
Tuesday’s report of 1,377 COVID-19 patients in hospital was revised to a pandemic-high 1,443 on Wednesday.
A junior hockey player in Stony Plain, Alta., has been suspended for eight games after he went into the stands to fight a fan, but his coach says he was defending his mom at the time.
Two events in as many weeks in which Alberta corrections officers fired their weapons is evidence staffing shortages are endangering inmates and staff alike, say sources connected to the prison.
A family is breathing a sigh of relief after a terrifying fire at an apartment in Etobicoke forced a mother to break a second-floor window to save her 10-month-old daughter.
An Ontario woman who says she was offered a free doorbell by a salesperson said she wishes she didn't then sign a 15-year contract for a furnace that will cost her $12,748.
Drivers are being warned to expect significant traffic delays on major highways from Thursday to Saturday as the 'Freedom Convoy' of truckers enters Ontario.
Three COVID-19 patients who were unvaccinated or partially vaccinated have received double lung transplants at a Montreal hospital after their lungs were irreversibly damaged by the disease. One patient was a 49-year-old mother of five.
Since the start of the pandemic, Quebec has issued tickets totaling more than $45 million for public health violations, but only a fraction of them have actually been paid so far, according to data provided to CTV News.
'A terrifying experience’: Montreal mother shares ordeal as ICU sees increase of children admitted with COVID-19 in fifth wave
The medical director at the PICU in the Montreal Children’s Hospital says it is seeing more children get sick with COVID and be sick enough to come to the ICU.
Manitoba's top doctor says hospitalization rates remain high but are stable – though it is too early to tell where the province is in the pandemic's current wave.
A U.S. border patrol agent says a group of people from India attempting to cross the Canada-U.S. border faced blizzard conditions and freezing temperatures during an 11-hour-long trek that left four people dead.
Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s chief public health officer said the province is continuing to see a significant amount of spread of COVID-19.
Nathaniel Carrier has pleaded guilty to first degree murder in connection to the death of his son and second degree murder in connection to the deaths of his parents.
Saskatchewan reported 1,194 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, along with six more deaths, however active cases are down again.
A popular Riversdale restaurant says it's putting a "pause" on its operations.
Saskatchewan’s premier is hinting some COVID-19 restrictions could soon be lifted, saying current measures may have run their course.
Whether its memories of attending them, or the recent discoveries of unmarked graves at the sites of former residential schools, many people have been mentally strained by the former schools.
Sylvester Ukabam, a former Regina doctor accused of sexually assaulting five female patients, continued to deny allegations made against him from the witness stand on Wednesday morning.
Premier Tim Houston said Nova Scotia is extending its current provincewide COVID-19 public health restrictions until Feb. 14 in an attempt to limit the spread of the virus.
An area of low pressure originating off the coastline of Florida will merge with a cold front on Friday. The resulting storm will rapidly strengthen into a nor’easter, which will move north to impact the Maritimes Saturday into Sunday.
The Halifax Regional Police are on the scene of a sudden death at a hotel in the city.
Matt and Tim Devereaux are sending three of their transports to Ottawa this weekend to protest mandatory vaccines for truckers crossing the border.
Dash-camera footage shows a collision happening as a fire truck approaches: emergency responders offer advice.
London could start losing ground in its efforts to alleviate the housing crisis unless City Hall intervenes.
Sault Ste. Marie's Group Health Centre has been granted an extension by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario for its annual Big Wish Lottery.
While the region is not out of the woods with regard to the rapid spread of the Omicron variant, Algoma's medical officer of health says there is reason for optimism.
In the next few months, the Timmins Youth Wellness Hub will be getting ready to open up its new permanent location.
All Region of Waterloo vaccination clinics will offer walk-ins for all eligible residents, starting Jan. 31.
Officials reported four new deaths related to COVID-19 on Wednesday, along with a dip in hospitalizations.
'There are some calls that stick with you': A dramatic increase in mental health disability claims amongst first responders
First responders, like paramedics, firefighters, and police officers say they often deal with mental health challenges.