Thursday 21 November, 2019

American tourist claims self-defense in death of man in Anguilla

Scott Hapgood shows off some of the injuries he sustained in a fight with a maintenance worker who subsequently died.

Scott Hapgood shows off some of the injuries he sustained in a fight with a maintenance worker who subsequently died.

The family of an American man charged with manslaughter for the death of a Dominican in Anguilla is defending his actions.

Scott Hapgood’s family published a statement in which they outlined the events of the fateful day in which a maintenance worker Kenny Mitchel, 27, was killed.

The incident took place on April 13. Hapgood has been charged with manslaughter and is expected to stand trial in August.

“We were excited for our first family vacation abroad in the beautiful and tranquil Caribbean island of Anguilla. But with a single knock at the door, our dream vacation turned into a chilling nightmare—a literal fight to survive,” Hapgood’s family said in a statement.

The family maintains that neither Scott nor any member of their family made any call for a maintenance request to their hotel room on April 13, 2019, or at any time prior.

“Neither Scott nor any member of our family knew the attacker before April 13, 2019, when he came to our room, dressed in the hotel's uniform. The attacker arrived minutes after our minor daughters walked back to the hotel room on their own. The man knocked on the door, saying he was there to fix a broken sink. Scott indicated the sinks were not broken as far as he was aware, but that the man was free to have a look. Like any of us would, he trusted a hotel staff person in uniform. Neither Scott nor any member of our family had any conversations with the attacker at any time prior to him coming to the hotel room on April 13, 2019,” the statement said.

Mitchel, who lived in Anguilla, died from “prone restraint, asphyxia and blunt force trauma to the head, neck, and torso.”

While the statement does not say how the fight started, it said the Connecticut businessman sustained severe injuries as a result of the physical struggle which ensued.

‘Scott was literally fighting for his life. He was bitten multiple times by the attacker, including on his face. After the attacker was restrained by a security guard, and before Scott was taken to the hospital to receive medical treatment for his injuries, we took the included photo,” the family said.

Hapgood’s wife was not present during the time of the incident.

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