Canadian socialite Jasmine Hartin has been detained at a border post after trying to leave Belize after being convicted of killing a police officer.
Hartin, 34, had avoided jail but was ordered to pay 75,000 Belize dollars ($37,000) after shooting and killing father-of-five Henry Jemmott, 42, in 2021.
She said she had been drinking with Jemmott and was being taught how to use his gun when it accidentally exploded, killing him.
Her lawyer said on Saturday that she had now paid the fine and wanted to “express her sincere regret and remorse to the Jemmott family for the loss of their beloved Henry”.
But after sending the money to his attorney, a court official refused to return his passport, a spokesman for Hartin said. She received an emergency travel document and attempted to cross from Santa Elena to Mexico at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Louisa Chiaramonte, a spokeswoman for Hartin, said the mother-of-two was taken to a room by a border agent for questioning, accused falsification of the travel document.
Local media suggested that Belize Police Commissioner Chester Williams intervened to prevent him from ‘fleeing’ the country, according to The temperature.
Jasmine Hartin shopping at a local fruit stand in Belize. The Canadian socialite was spotted wearing a black dress and straw hat during the solo outing on May 24, 2023
Henry Jemmott, the police chief who was shot by Hartin, pictured with his family, widow Romit Wilson and children from left: Henry Jemmott III, Jemarie Jemmott, Keyannie Jemmott
Jasmine Hartin is the ex-partner of Andrew Ashcroft, son of British billionaire Lord Michael Ashcroft.
After having two children, the couple opened a hotel in San Pedro, Belize in May 2021, during the pandemic.
But weeks later it was discovered that she had shot and killed her friend, Police Commissioner Henry Jammott.
She said Jemmott urged her to get a gun for her safety and that officer offered to teach her how to load and unload her service weapon.
Upon returning the gun, she claims, it exploded, killing him.
In April last year she pleaded guilty to negligent manslaughter and was sentenced last week to perform 300 hours of community service and make a video about the dangers of alcohol and handling of firearms.
Hartin was also ordered to pay damages to the family, which a friend allegedly helped her pay.
Judge Ricardo Sandicroft had asked Hartin to forward the fine to his lawyer.
But Chiaramonte says even with an emergency travel document, she was prevented from leaving the country on Tuesday afternoon.
Hartin brought documents to show the funds had already been sent to her lawyer when she was questioned by a border agent, according to her spokesperson.
But, she said, “they had the border agent tell story after story why she didn’t have the right things to go through.”
“Every time she produced this [the agent] was needed, she would find something else.
Hartin was then taken to a police station in Corozal Town, Belize, and held in the cells.
Jasmin Hartin leaves court in tears after pleading guilty to negligent manslaughter at Belize City Supreme Court on April 25, 2023
While out on bail awaiting trial, Hartin gave several print and filmed interviews.
She was also featured in the documentary One Bullet in Belize on the American streaming service Discovery+.
Hartin described in detail how she “accidentally” shot the officer while they were having a late night drink.
She said she “escaped” from under her friend and was left covered in blood.
His former partner Andrew Ashcroft said Hartin was “very drunk” the night of the incident.