The International Murder Case That Changed My Reporting Career
As a jaded TV news producer covering a murdered musician, a sexist mayor, and a brewing protest movement, I had no choice but to become a part of the story.
Illustrations by Leah Kwak
I shrugged my arms out of my suit jacket, as our fixer greeted us in the parking lot of Piarco International Airport, steering our small news crew toward our car. I couldn’t tell if it was unethical for me to enjoy the welcome change from New York’s frigid weather, since I was here in Trinidad and Tobago for the somber task of covering a murder. Still, the warmth hugged my shoulders as we sped toward Port of Spain. I relaxed into its soft grip despite my misgivings. “First, we are going to the Silver Stars Panyard, where I hear Tim Kee will be,” Paul, the fixer, told us from the front seat. “Then I will take you to where her body was found.”
Asami Nagakiya was a 30-year-old Japanese woman from Hokkaido who visited Trinidad and Tobago to play the steel pans. Steel-pan playing is an art originating in Trinidad and Tobago, where an industrial drum is cut and shaped, such that a pannist (what you call a steel-pan player) can use a set of wooden rubber-tipped stick…