Tonight, 32 year old Jasmin Hartin's sudden fall from grace has never been more pronounced. She has gone from the .01% ultra rich of the San Pedro's expatriate community to a prisoner on remand at the Kolbe Central Prison.
The woman accused of accidentally shooting and killing Superintendent Henry Jemmoth was arraigned yesterday - and though feverish attempts were made to secure bail for her today, they were unsuccessful.
So, tonight - she's at Kolbe - and Cherisse Halsall has been on San Pedro following the case closely since yesterday. Here's her report on all that happened today:
It was yet another waiting game at the San Pedro police station this morning as island socialite turned accused prisoner Jasmine Hartin, who yesterday was denied bail, was set to be transferred to the Kolbe Foundation's Belize Central prison.
And while her attorney Godfrey Smith had promised to deliver a briefing, he wasn't on the island today - he was in the city filing for Supreme court bail - in the hopes of sparing the 32 year old Canadian from spending a night at the Hattieville Ramada.
And while there was no sign of movement this morning, by noon Officer Commanding San Pedro Superintendent Christopher Noble was spearheading the erection of a memorial dedicated to his fallen brother Supt Henry Jemmott.
The memorial placed lovingly in front of the police station where Jemott himself had been San Pedro's longest serving OC was a homage to the well loved officer and a reminder to Jasmine Hartin that she took him away from them.
And shortly after that memorial went up, Attorney Hector Guerra arrived, quickly, filed some papers, and then departed in a hurry.
And by 2:15 when it was evident that there would be no Supreme Court bail hearing in the City, Hartin, clad in jeans and a hoodie and covering handcuffed wrists with what looked like a plate of takeout, finally emerged from the San Pedro Police station, to be whisked off lagoon side for a police contacted boat named the Seaductress.
It was bound for Belize City, docking nearly 2 hours later at Barracks pier on Marine Parade.
That's where our mainland team saw Hartin, who had likely been allowed to remove her cuffs while en route, cuffed once again and placed in blue police van. That van then sped off toward her final destination.
The Kolbe Foundation, where Prison C.E.O. Virgillo Murrillo told us that the 32-year-old who will be dealt with like any other untried prisoner will become the only caucsian among 1041 inmates.
And by day's end, the word from the Commissioner of Police to the media was that Jasmine Hartin had been safely delivered to the women's section of Her Majesty's prison where she remains pending a supreme court bail hearing.
Jemott’s Fishing Buddy Cries For Justice
So, Hartin is at the Kolbe foundation tonight among her fellow female inmates, most of whom are minor offenders and illegal immigrants. But while the Prison CEO has stressed fair treatment for the partner of Andrew Ashcroft, many are hoping for her charge of manslaughter to result in a conviction.
Among them, Fransico Arceo or "Pawny" as he's known on the island. He's the fisherman who took Superintendent Jemmott out on his boat in what would become the last hours of his life.
Today he's told us that he's extremely saddened by the situation and prays that justice should prevail.
Francisco "Pawny" Arceo, Spent last day with Jemmott "Yes. he is my very best friend, I fishing with him. I went fishing with him that same day. We fish for the full day and its not easy for me right now, because I am hurted."
Reporter "Sir, if you could share with us what type of spirits was Mr. Jemmott in that last day that he spent with you?"
Francisco "Pawny" Arceo "Very happy. As all the time he been with me, talking jokes, I even take most of the big police officers - like play games, jokes and we did everything in the boat - happy. He caught fish more than ever. He hooked as much fish as he wanted, not a drink of alcohol, nothing in his system."
Reporter "Sir, do you know anything about the nature of Mr. Jemmott's relationship with Ms. Hartin?"
Francisco "Pawny" Arceo "No, my dear. That can't be by surprise, it's a big shock to me, because If I would have known - always make games out of it. A definitely no. I don't even know them. I don't know her - never. I just ask where he was staying and he says I'm staying at Grand Colony and that's all I know about him."
Reporter "The commissioner of police has said that Mr. Jemmott did ask for time off because he was having some personal issues. Did he share any of those with you?"
Francisco "Pawny" Arceo "No, I'm surprised, he never did any of those things. I said how is your family and he said that everybody was doing good."
Reporter "What's the outcome that you would like to see from this situation?"
Francisco "Pawny" Arceo "I feel very saddened. I've been hearing the news, I've been sticking my ears to all kind of news and I hope and just wish that its fake, but apparently it looks like at the end of the road things are not going to happen like how I was expecting to happen. For me, I'm not a judge, I'm not Jesus to crucify nobody, but if I kill somebody, kill me, because I kill - because I know what I did. This is not good, its nonsense. I would like to say that because I am powerful I could do what I want, no. Is there justice? For me, the way how it's going on I don't think there is justice. Let's do it the right way, make everybody happy. I love the police officers, the high and low rank police officers, so where are we putting our policemen, when these things there is no justice. Who are we, we have the evidence, what else do we need."
Jemmott’s Sister "Devastated" at Manslaughter Charge
And along that same line, Henry Jemott's sister also wants to see a murder charge. Speaking with us this evening via phone form Cayo where she is taking care of her deceased brother's five kids - she told us she was devastated to get the news - which she didn't get from police - but from a news media facebook post:
Voice of: Marie Jemmott Tzul, Sister of the deceased "I would just say I am disappointed in the police department and that's not only my opinion but it's a consensus of my family, his friends and the general Belizean people. I had faith in all the police department. It's one of their own and I think in my honest opinion with due respect to them, I think they should have took that to court as murder and let the court decide. That's my humble and honest opinion. Its a big disrespect to my brother who have served for 23 years plus and if it was anybody in his shoes, if the tables were turned, he would have done the correct thing. Because why was the door closed and she was cooped up and all that. Come on, everybody else they march them through the street, put them in the vehicle and go along. So why the special treatment? That gives us more pain in our heat to see, because maybe it's a person of color, a person with money - that would have made us feel much better if they would have taken her as an ordinary person. Jasmine has taken away the family bread winner, his children. My little big brother."
The Glock’s Safety Trigger Prevents Misfiring
Darrell Tutsi Usher also spoke about the Glock Pistol which Jemmoth carried as his service weapon. That is the gun that killed him - supposedly from an accidental discharge. He said that is highly unlikely based on the gun's trigger safety:
Jules Vasquez, reporter "A glock is not a weapon that can be fired accidentally. You really have to square your finger on the trigger and pull. It's not something that oops right. You have to put your finger there because of the 2 levels of safety."
Darrel Usher, Trained by Jemmott "The glock have a safety in the trigger. So you have to like double click, 2 click you have to pull with the glock - that you have to intentionally squeeze, put pressure on that to make the glock go off."
COMPOL Says He Stands By DPP Decision
That call for justice is a sentiment being echoed by all Belizeans. And it's a becoming more than usually heavy weight on the police department.
And when we spoke to the commissioner via zoom this evening he told our Jules Vasquez that he's committed to a meticulous trying of this case but that ultimately he has put his faith in the decision of the Director of Public Prosecution.
Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police "Well as I have said from day one that we were going to do our investigation as impartial as we possibly can and that there was going to be no special treatment afforded to her. Her social statue should not affect how she is to be treated or should not allow her to be treated different than any ordinary person who have committed a crime and so as the commissioner I ensured that I remained in constant dialogue with my commander out on the cayes telling them the need for us to deal with her as we deal with any ordinary person and contrary to what some may want to say that we have given her special treatment, she was sent to sleep here and sent to sleep there, which is total nonsense, but again, we live in a country where everybody seems to be opinionated and to some extent the opinion is one that not even they themselves could believe, so it's just the way of life. We just have to learn to live with it."
Jules Vasquez, reporter "Now, we know that obviously there is no universal joy or universal approval for the charge, manslaughter by negligence, but you have said throughout its a decision for the DPP. Should the police have waited until they received a report from the weapons experts at the forensic department before a final decision was made on the charge and is such a report pending?"
Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police "That would have been a call for the DPP to make and I can tell you had that been done, she would had to be release from custody, because that report could not be done overnight, it requires intense ballistic testing and if it were that she was to be released from custody without a charge pending that report, then you could just imagine how Belizeans would have gone in uproar and so I support the decision made by the DPP, she is the expert in this field, I respect her as a persons and as a prosecutor her ability to do her job and I have every confidence in her."
Charged with Manslaughter, Jasmine Hartin remanded to Belize Central Prison after shooting death of top cop
Tonight, June 1st, island socialite Jasmine Hartin is spending her first night at the Kolbe Foundation – Belize Central Prison. Hartin was remanded for the charge of Manslaughter by Negligence in the shooting death of 42-year-old Superintendent of Police Henry Jemmott. She will remain there awaiting her bail application to the Supreme Court. The incident has received international attention as Hartin is the partner of Andrew Ashcroft, son of billionaire Lord Michael Ashcroft. Hartin and Andrew have two children and recently opened a luxurious beach resort in San Pedro Town.
After four nights in custody at the San Pedro Police department, the well-known businesswoman emerged from the San Pedro Police Station Tuesday afternoon escorted by police, wearing blue jeans, a red hoodie, and a black face mask. She carried a plastic bag, which concealed her handcuffs, and climbed onto the back of a golf cart. The accused tried to hide her face and remained silent as questions were hurled at her by the media crowd. A female police officer sat next to her, and she was whisked away to the San Pedro Sunset Boardwalk, where a private boat transported her to Belize City. From there, she was carried to the Belize Central Prison in Hattieville, where she remains until her court hearing for bail at the Supreme Court.
Click here to read the rest of the article in the San Pedro Sun
This is not justice.' Sister of Belize cop shot dead by Jasmine Hartin slams decision to charge the Canadian socialite with just manslaughter by negligence... click here for the story in the Daily Mail
Jasmine Hartin: Ashcroft son’s partner taken to Belize jail plagued by scorpions... click here for the story in the Times