Jasmine Hartin: Canadian socialite pleads guilty to manslaughter - what is her connection to Lord Ashcroft?
The former daughter-in-law of the Tory billionaire donor has pleaded guilty to manslaughter by negligence following the death of police officer Henry Jemmott
Socialite Jasmine Hartin has pleaded guilty to manslaughter by negligence after a police officer was found dead in Belize.
Superintendent Henry Jemmott, 42, was found in the water off San Pedro in May 2021. He was believed to have been shot with his own gun.
Hartin was accused of killing the father-of-five and subsequently faced the manslaughter charge. However, she has now pleaded guilty to the crime at the start of her trial at the Supreme Court in Belize City.
Speaking to reporters outside the courthouse, Hartin said: “I just want Henry's family to have peace now and I want this whole thing behind all of us so we can heal." A sentencing hearing is expected to happen on 31 May.
The socialite has a connection to Tory billionaire donor Lord Michael Ashcroft. But what is the connection - and what happened in Belize?
Here's everything you need to know.
Who is Jasmine Hartin?
Hartin, 34, is a Canadian socialite and former real estate agent who was married to Andrew Ashcroft - the son of businessman and former Conservative Party chairman Lord Michael Ashcroft.
She has two children with Andrew. The pair were believed to have split months before Hartin was arrested in Belize.
What allegedly happened in Belize?
Hartin was in Belize to support her partner Ashcroft as he opened a new luxury hotel on the island of San Pedro.
Suspicion around Hartin arose after it was revealed that Mr Jemmott had been drinking with the socialite hours before his death. Hartin is said to have invited the officer to her apartment to discuss her personal security situation, before the pair allegedly broke the Covid curfew.
Mr Jemmott and Hartin are said to have walked to a dock nearby to her apartment. Hartin then offered to give the police officer a shoulder massage after he complained of pain in his back.
Following this, Mr Jemmott was shot by his own gun. According to Hartin, he placed his gun down and it discharged when she picked it up to hand it back to him, hitting him behind his ear.
The police officer was found in the water. Hartin was quickly arrested by Belize police in connection with his death.