Two tourists, husband and wife Wayne and Sheila King, were robbed at gunpoint last Friday in broad daylight outside of the Basilica de Santo Domingo in Heredia, north of San José.
“This was 4:30 in the afternoon,” said Jim Twomey, owner of Bibi’s Bed and Breakfast, where the tourists were staying.
“There were kids coming home from school.”
The wife was snapping photographs when two men in hooded sweatshirts approached them and demanded the money belt the husband was wearing, Twomey said.
Upon seeing the weapon, the husband backed into the middle of the street while loudly screaming, “No,” Twomey said.
People started to take notice of what was happening, and the robbers grabbed the woman’s camera and fled,Wayne King said.
“I am not sure, but the fact that there were so many people around may have kept the bad guys from shooting them,” Twomey said.
The couple had been planning to spend five weeks studying Costa Rica.
“We were assaulted within 30 hours of arrival in Costa Rica,” King said. “Our intent was to …get to know the people and culture of the country. After seeing the security fences on the homes … we were realizing there was more than the occasional pickpocket.”
The couple left after four days and are unlikely to come back.
“They learned enough about the culture of Costa Rica on Friday to last them a lifetime and they left today,” Twomey said.
“They won’t be back.”
The Kings said they did not file a police report because they did not know how to.