Canadian socialite avoids jail for Belize police chief’s manslaughter

Canadian socialite Jasmine Hartin, 34 years old, has reportedly avoided prison time for the killing of Belize police chief Henry Jemmott with his own weapon. Local reports state that she has been given a £30,000 fine and 300 hours of community service. Hartin pleaded guilty to manslaughter in April after Jemmott’s death on 28 May 2021, which was caused by a single gunshot wound to the head. She is the former partner of Andrew Ashcroft, son of renowned UK businessman Lord Michael Ashcroft.

As per the sentence handed down by Belize’s high court, Hartin is required to pay US$75,000 within 12 months or face a potential 12-month prison sentence, Channel 5 Belize reported. Additionally, Breaking Belize News stated that she must produce a video warning against the dangers of drunkenness and mishandling firearms.

At the time of Jemmott’s death, Hartin and Ashcroft were living in Belize with their two children. Throughout the investigation and criminal trial, it was disclosed that Hartin and Jemmott, who were friends, attended a party together on Ambergris Caye island on the night of his death. The police reported that the pair took a walk on the beach before ending up at a pier, where Jemmott handed his gun to Hartin to put aside.

Hartin later informed investigators that she had been drinking and accidentally discharged the Glock 17 while fumbling with it after Jemmott requested it back. The police discovered Hartin near the pier, covered in blood and distressed. Jemmott’s body was found in the water off San Pedro, Belize. Hartin was subsequently charged with manslaughter by negligence and pleaded guilty in April 2023. Belize’s criminal code stipulates a maximum prison sentence of five years for manslaughter by negligence.

After entering her guilty plea, Hartin told reporters outside the court: “I just want Henry’s family to have peace now and I want this whole thing to be behind all of us so we can heal.”

World News

Chris Hollingsworth

Chris studied journalism in the US and worked there for a few years before moving to Thailand in 2021, just as he thought Covid was coming to an end - sadly more lockdowns ensued as he came out of his 14 days of isolation! He now combines his passion for writing and journalism to cover US and global news for The Thaiger.

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