Was it murder? Was it accidental? Is the confession legit?
Authorities in the Caribbean country of Belize are working on those questions after a police official was found shot dead and a socialite married to the son of one of Britain’s wealthiest men was arrested in connection to his death.
The saga started in late May when Belize police Superintendent Henry Jemmott was shot as he was with Jasmine Hartin, according to the Times of London.
Hartin is married to Andrew Ashcroft, the son of Lord Ashcroft. Lord Ashcroft is a former deputy chairman of the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom. He is also one of Britain’s wealthiest people, with a net worth of more than $2 billion (U.S.).
He was the one-time owner of home-security system company ADT.
Hartin and Andrew Ashcroft live in Belize. According to her LinkedIn page, Hartin is the director of lifestyle and experience for a hotel collection.
Jemmott was found dead in the water around 2 a.m. near a pier, according to the Times.
A security guard reported hearing a gunshot and found Hartin covered in blood and shaken. The duo was socializing on the pier past the country’s 10 p.m. curfew. The pair were friends and drinking before the shooting, police said.
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Hartin initially told police the shot came from a passing boat, according to the report.
However, a new theory is that Hartin was playing with Jemmott’s service pistol when it went off, according to the Times.
Police considered charging Hartin with cocaine possession, but then she started to cooperate with officers, according to 7 News Belize. It was then she said the shooting was accidental.
On May 31, Hartin was arraigned on charges of manslaughter by negligence, according to 7 News Belize. The charge is significant as she does not face a murder charge, lending credence to the accidental shooting claim.
She was denied bail.
A funeral for Jemmott is planned for later this month. His sister, Marie Jemmott Tzul, told the Belize new channel that he was a loving brother, son and father. No matter what someone was going through, Jemmott still had the same humor and smile.
The Belize Police Department also posted on social media about Jemmott’s death.
“You have left us suddenly, King, but your dedication to the Government of Belize, the Belize Police Department, and the people of Belize will never be forgotten...sleep on OFFICER for we will all meet again one day,” the post reads.
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