The head of the local government in Nevis sought Tuesday to assure the public that the island is safe despite the fact that U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer was robbed in his vacation home by a man wielding a machete.
Nevis Premier Joseph Parry said police are taking the matter seriously and he said that he visited Breyer at his home the day after Thursday night's attack.
"The police have been very much involved from the very beginning," Parry said in an interview with radio station WINN 98.9 in the capital of St. Kitts. "I am satisfied that the police have been doing everything within their power to deal with the situation."
A government official said that authorities have a suspect but no one has yet been detained. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to reveal information about the investigation. The government of the twin-island of St. Kitts and Nevis was expected to issue a formal statement later.
The 73-year-old Breyer, his wife Joanna and guests were confronted by the robber around 9 p.m. EST Thursday in the home Breyer owns on the Caribbean island of Nevis, Supreme Court spokeswoman Kathy Arberg said. The intruder took about $1,000 in cash and no one was hurt.
The U.S. Marshals Service, the FBI and the Supreme Court Police are assisting the investigation, officials said. FBI spokesman Paul Bresson said no one has been arrested.
"It's still an ongoing investigation," he said.
Breyer reported on his most recent annual disclosure in June that property he owns on Nevis is worth between $100,000 and $250,000. The home is in the hills in the Golden Rock area of the island, which home to nearly 13,000 people.
Breyer has kept a low-profile in Nevis and few people in the country were apparently aware he frequents the island.
Parry noted that tourism is important to the local economy and he appealed for witnesses or anyone else with information to come forward.
"I want to appeal to the population that we need to be very careful how we conduct ourselves," he said. "I want to make an appeal to the people of Nevis ...when people are acting out of line that we inform the police.