Machete-wielding pirates hack U.S. tourist to death in Guatemala

Armed robbers attempted to steal a sailboat belonging to a U.S. couple this past weekend, attacking the two and killing the husband with a machete.

The attack happened in northeast Guatemala, on Lake Izabal.

Daniel and Nancy Dryden, retirees from Alaska, had taken their newly purchased sailboat to the lake and were preparing to make a trip into the Caribbean and, eventually, up the eastern coast of the United States.

The four men boarded the Drydens’ boat and at first demanded U.S. dollars. When the couple couldn’t give them any, they demanded the keys to the boat. They hacked at the Drydens with long, crescent-shaped machetes, killing Daniel and seriously wounding Nancy.

“They poked us and stabbed us with the machetes, and they were asking for money, specifically dollars,” Nancy Dryden tells the Associated Press from her hospital bed in the Guatemalan town of Morales.

The couple’s children were expected to arrive in Guatemala today, and Nancy Dryden was to head back to the U.S. for further medical care.

Local authorities say they are investigating the attack, but so far have not apprehended the men, who fled from the scene by swimming to a distant shore on the lake.