- Written by Tom Oat
The owner of this rental home now wonders why the suspicious November death has not been investigated further.
EAST END — The property owner expected the national publicity precipitated by the November 2014 death of a controversial Tennessee insurance investment entrepreneur in an apparent burglary at his isolated East End Point rental home to affect future rentals of the $5,000 per month property to some degree — he didn’t expect the death to pass relatively unnoticed and uninvestigated.
Edward H. Netherland, 60, a notorious insurance company executive from Nashville, Tennessee, was found dead with a head wound on Tuesday morning, November 18, in his isolated rental home at the farthest reach of an undeveloped luxury subdivision at Privateer Bay on the East End of St. John.
When the death was first reported it was initially suspected that Netherland, a V.I. tax-shelter resident, had died from injuries suffered in an apparent robbery at the small rental property dramatically perched on a steep hillside overlooking the waters between the U.S. and British Virgin Islands.
V.I. Police Department Major Crime detectives in the St. Thomas/St. John district said Netherland was discovered unresponsive in his home on the east end of St. John at about 9:15 a.m. on November 18. Detectives also said the results of the autopsy, received by them on November 20, list cause of death as blunt force trauma, according to published reports.
Quadruple By-Pass and Pile of Debt
“What I’ve learned was that the cause of death was heart failure, no doubt precipitated by the brawl, but he’d had quadruple bypass surgery a year ago,” explained the owner of the house, which rented for $5,000 per month.
“It also came to light that he was in debt to the tune of tens of millions, not including lawsuits of a similar level,” the longtime island businessman said. “I don’t know enough about the particulars to say if his business was a scam, but I can say it was ‘complicated’.”
“The family declined to pursue an independent investigation, especially in light of the fact that this didn’t seem to be a random event,” one island acquaintance of the victim told St. John Tradewinds. “Apparently his past behavior had strained their relations and they’re attitude is to turn the page.”
The property owner had no further information on Netherland’s personal contacts.