Tuesday marked almost three years since Canadian socialite Jasmine Hartin inadvertently shot Belizean police superintendent in the head with his own revolver. She entered a guilty plea to homicide by negligence.
The plea, which was entered just before the start of the trial, puts an end to a protracted tale that had gripped the country of Central America. According to reports, Hartin, the former daughter-in-law of British billionaire Lord Michael Ashcroft, sobbed as she admitted responsibility to the murder of police superintendent Henry Jemmott.
She stated as she left the courthouse, “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,” In May 2021 in San Pedro, Belize, Hartin and Jemmott walked to a dock after drinking cinnamon whiskey together, according to Hartin’s account of the fateful incident.
She claimed that Jemmott allowed her to handle his Glock 17 because he believed she needed to become familiar with using a gun to defend herself. Cherry, Jemmott’s sister, previously expressed to CBS that she thought her brother “would never do a thing like that.”
Hartin claimed that after handling the firearm, Jemmott informed her that his shoulder was sore, and she offered to give him a massage. After that, Jemmott advised them to “head inside,” she recalled to CBS. She then attempted to remove the gun’s magazine, but she claimed that the darkness made it difficult for her to see clearly.
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She was struggling with the gun when it went off. “He fell on top of me. And all I could feel was warmth. And I later then realized—he was bleeding on me,” she claimed. Later, divers found Jemmott’s body in the sea close to the pier.
According to Channel 5 Belize, Hartin initially told officials that Jemmott had been shot by a person in a kayak. Later, she told CBS that she didn’t recall saying anything, adding that the shooting’s immediate aftermath “was such a blur.” She argued that she wasn’t just making things up to get out of being held accountable.
When police officers arrested Hartin, they discovered cocaine in her possession. She admitted to CBS that the narcotics weren’t hers but would not identify their owner. She also argued that her reputation as a “wild, crazy, party girl that’s hanging from the rafters” was unfounded and that she and Jemmott were only friends, not romantically involved.
“That’s not it at all. I’m a businesswoman. I’m a mother. I’m a friend… I’m a wife,” she said. Last year, Hartin’s ex-husband Andrew Ashcroft received custody of their two children. The millionaire father of Ashcroft, who formerly represented Belize as its ambassador to the UN, is well-known in that country. At Hartin’s scheduled sentencing next month, no jail time is anticipated.