Convicted Cop Killer Escapes Jail Time, Fined $75,000 in Manslaughter Trial
Convicted cop killer, Jasmine Hartin, has escaped jail time after being slapped with a $75,000 fine in the manslaughter by negligence trial based on the killing of Superintendent of Police, Henry Jemmoth. Today, Hartin appeared in the High Court for sentencing before Justice Ricardo O’Neil Sandcroft. The session commenced shortly after one o’clock and began with Hartin, her attorney, Orson Elrington, and the DPP, meeting to agree on the summary of facts submitted to the court. Hartin’s attorney then asked the court for leniency on his client based on several factors, all of which the Crown disagreed with. However, despite Elrington’s plea, Justice Sandcroft stated that his decision must have reflected the fact that a life has been lost. Justice Sandcroft sentenced Hartin to a seventy-five thousand dollar fine which she has one year to pay or will serve one year in prison. She is barred from being in possession of a gun license, fishing license, or outdoor card. Hartin must also serve 300 hours of community service at the Young Men’s Christian Association. She is also to produce a video speaking on the dangers of excessive drinking which will be used to educate youth on the risk of drinking alcohol. In his 25-page Judgment, Justice Sandcroft stated that he also took into account the impact on Jemmott’s family, the impact on Hartin, and the fact that Hartin is a young mother. The non-custodial sentence is one that Hartin’s attorney says she was pleased with but believes the fine is excessive.
Orson “OJ” Elrington, Attorney: “That the case law speaks to what should be defined. Ultimately those who study law will tell you that it is the biggest fine ever. So the case law clearly shows that significantly more than anything which has ever been handed down for a matter like this. Well the judge ordered that it be used for a rehabilitation resource center for police officers.”
Reporter: The DPP stated that she didn’t agree with some of what you stated.
Orson “OJ” Elrington, Attorney: “That’s her opinion and I had my opinion we stated our opinions and the judge decided on what it was. Their interpretation of monies received by them is not compensation I only know two type of thing in law either that you get compensation or not. My client disagreed with certain facts and therefore both parties both the prosecution and the defense had to agree as to the facts that the court would use to come to its sentence and so what we did was we went, we met and we made minor adjustments and both parties were able to agree as to what were the facts that we would use for the judge to levy his sentence.”
Elrington also spoke on the fact that the Justice did not make any ruling in reference to compensation for Jemmott’s family, which he says should have been a factor determined in this case. Elrington further explained that Hartin is not restricted from leaving the country but has no intentions of doing so.
Orson “OJ” Elrington, Attorney: “Well she has the right to leave the country now just like you and I. So of course it is that she has the right to leave the country. There is no restriction on her anymore for her not to be able to leave the country but she has no intention he life is here in Belize. Attorneys and lawyers are creatures of instruction. We do, we act on the instruction of clients. It is an unprecedented sentence. It is significantly more than anybody has every been fined for a matter like this, significantly more but whether or not my client wants to appeal is up to her. That is not something I decide. We advise her on the law, she makes a determination based on the risk of doing so and she makes that decision that is not a decision for me to make and one which I most certainly have not received any instructions as to what is her intention either way at this point in time. The judge made it clear that he was not factoring compensation which is normally the bigger factor in these matters in his fine that was a fine that goes directly to the state alright ? So he ordered zero for compensation which is normally in these proceedings and Jules being the bush lawyer he is will do his research and he will see all of the former cases and to see that the normal bigger portion of these matters if the compensation and to see that this is significantly more than anything any court has ever awarded for a matter like this .”