UPDATE: US resident charged with death of Dominican in Anguilla

Gavin Hapgood charged with the manslaughter of Kenny Mitchel

Gavin Hapgood, a US citizen, has been granted bail after being charged with the manslaughter of Dominican, Kenny Richie Marty Mitchel.

At the time of the killing, Hapgood was vacationing with his family at an Anguillan resort where Mitchel worked.

According to the Anguillian newspaper, the death certificate stated that the cause of death was due to prone restraint, positional asphyxia and blunt force trauma to the head, neck, and torso.

Hapgood was taken into custody by Anguillan authorities where he was to be held in remand until 22nd August 2019.

The Royal Anguilla Police Force magistrate’s court reported on April the 17th that Hapgood’s defense requested bail which was set at $200,000 E.C.

While Anguilla police initially reported that bail was denied, information began circulating that bail was in fact granted the same day.

It has also been reported that Hapgood has since left Anguilla.

DNO attempted to contact the Royal Anguilla Police Force seeking clarification but we were advised that the media officer who was authorized to speak on the matter, will not be available until Tuesday due to the Easter holiday.

However, we were referred to the Royal Anguilla Police Force’s Facebook page where we found the following statement that seems to confirm the reports:

“We are not shrouding the case in mystery we are bound by rules and so are others on what can be said. We have charged a man in connection with the death of Mr Mitchell. The court granted bail and we now prepare for the Court process and eventual trial.”

This is in contrast to their release on March 17 via Facebook which was titled “44yr Old American Male Charged for Manslaughter”

It sated, “Garvin Scott Hapgood 44 yr old male was arrested and charged for the offence on manslaughter. Mr. Hapgood appeared before the magistrate court today Wednesday April 17th 2019 where an application was made for bail on his behalf. Upon hearing the application, bail was denied and Mr. Hapgood was remanded to Her majesty prison to return to court on Thursday August 22nd 2019.”

In the latest Facebook post on the matter from the Anguilla Police Force,  Commissioner Paul Morrison states, “The Courts deal with bail and there is a presumption in favour of a grant of bail. At all times, until convicted there is the presumption of innocence.”

The statement goes on to say, “Justice can only be served when a guilty man is convicted and an innocent man is not, and that is decided before the Court and were the rules of evidence and law preside and not in social media where there are no rules”

 

Read full statement on Facebook.

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47 Comments

  1. Rich
    May 3, 2019
  2. April 24, 2019

    This is racism from the very top. I wonder if it was the other way around would they have allowed the Dominican bail and leave him with his travel documents that would have allowed him to leave the island. Shame on the courts and police in Anguilla.

    • Mr. Gouty
      April 25, 2019

      My sympathy goes out to the family of this young man of Dominica, Mr. Kelnny Richie Marty Mitchell. R.I.P! I wish the Government of the Commonwealth of Dominica and the OECS / CARICOM will raise their voices in favor of this young man who had a bright future. Gavin Hapgood, even you are from America, we can’t allow you to walk out freely by taking away the life of Mr. Kenya Richie Marty Mitchell, just like that. The K.K.K has taken away too many innocent black lives like we are nothing. Gavin Hapgood, now you are coming in our backyard and murder our very own!

  3. April 23, 2019

    Well, WHAT HAPPENED, exactly??? So much info is missing from this story. What EXACTLY cause Kenny’s death? I know he was strangled. Why???? Why was this man granted bail and allowed to leave? Wondering mind wants to know.

  4. Yogi Ni
    April 23, 2019

    The court system there is stink. Why would any learned Judge grant an American Citizen accused of manslaughter bail. Do they really think this guy is coming back for the trial. If that was a black man who killed a white man in the USA he would not even get bail to stay in the country further more to leave. It is really sad that our people in the Caribbean who are in high position of authority are modern day uncle toms and house slave. I’m not going to comment on the case because I don’t know the facts. All I know is that the man that killed the gentleman should not have been allowed to leave the country, even if he was granted bail.

  5. Anthony P. Ismael Minister of Free Pampers
    April 22, 2019

    Admin. You’re very late with this story. I wonder why you did not publish his defense attorney’s name. Is it because he is a big shot with the Labor Administration? Usually you would publish the names of his defense attorney. We saw him on Facebook boarding a plane for the United States. All tail numbers can be entered into the FAA’s website revealing where an aircraft is registered. It’s amazing that your reporting is shrouded in mystery when we saw live footage of this fiasco. Remember, this isn’t the 1970s where only a few trusted persons have access to information anymore. I am disappointed by your reporting of this story. Too little, too late for me.

    ADMIN: In a previous reply we already clarified that the lawyer’s name is Thomas Astaphan not to be confused with senior counsel Anthony Astaphan. We take your point that we could have indeed put this story out faster but we focused on the official police statements rather than relaying only what was on social media.

  6. Man bites dogs
    April 21, 2019

    If the story is true this man left Anguilla for America.Den this is the end of the story he got away with murder because the US do not serve it citizens with deportation to another country to face charges and also 200,000.00 dollars bail for killing a black man. I say this is an absolute disgusting insult from the Anguillan authoritties. I just hope that his wife gets justice ⚖ for her husband.

  7. Child of Itassi
    April 21, 2019

    If there is evidence that Gavin called the font desk to ask for Kenny specifically, then the premeditation concept might take precedence in court.

  8. PabloV
    April 21, 2019

    How did this happen? It is important to know if he was expected to be at that suit for work. Will someone find out what does the hotel have to say as to whether that worker was supposed to be at that residence?

  9. Locs Girl
    April 20, 2019

    Justice will not be served in this case, sad to say. The accused has been released and back on American soil. Anguilla will not tarnish their reputation by going after this “American” citizen. Money talks…tourism.

  10. Mark
    April 20, 2019

    Anguilla does not want to tarnish the industry they strongly depend on..
    Justice will never be serve..
    Money talk bull…. walk

    Mark

  11. Joseph John
    April 20, 2019

    Great reporting DNO, real professionalism. All salient points covered even to the point of correcting misinformation re Astaphan who is from St Kitts.

  12. April 20, 2019

    Something is wrong with this whole story. The victim die from prone restraint, positional asphyxia and blunt force trauma to the head, neck, and torso.

    I would conclude there was a fight. and the Assailant was on the top of the victim abdomen, while the victim was on his back on the ground; and the assailant was choking the victim with both hand, while raising up the victim’s head with both choking hands and slamming his head onto the floor. An important question is: what is the floor made of?

    I cannot account for the injuries to the victim’s torso which was also so severe that they coroner include them in the part of the cause of death. I will like to read the casefile & the post-mortem report of the victim to see if the charge of manslaughter was the right charge and not murder.

    the question that must be asked here is: was the victim conscious or unconscious when asphyxia set in. If the blows to the victim’s head were enough to render him unconscious. this changes the…

    • Galileo
      April 21, 2019

      And who are you? Meaning what are you qualifications in such matters? I mean no disrespect. Just curious because of your comments.

      • April 21, 2019

        It’s a fair question, so I Googled him, and he’s a Vincentian who was a policeman in Bermuda and a community activist, among other things. It certainly seems like his opinion would be worth considering.

      • Galileo
        April 22, 2019

        Thank you very much Steve. I am criminalist and is just interested in knowing his proficiency in that regard. Not sure why my inquiry angered so many.

  13. Sybil nowell
    April 20, 2019

    If that happened in DA all you would criticise the police. A white man kill a Dominican, and hey not a word is said.

    • Ben
      April 21, 2019

      The Dominican govt still has to look into that matter. I hope our incompetent AG does something worthy of his position for once

  14. justice for kenny
    April 20, 2019

    Personally i believe that the management of the Malliouhana resort needs to speak up in this matter. As a nation this is a call for us to stand together and to seek justice. This isn’t just racism but this is a direct attack on our caribbean people. Kenny was born and bred dominican, he was kindhearted and patriotic. he was a loving soul and were he still here and anyone he knew was in this position he would do everything in his power to help their family find justice so the onus is on us now as a nation to find means to get justice for him. It’s sad that for $200,000.00 EC this man was allowed to board a private plane and go back to his life in america like nothing happened while two countries are left to mourn. If justice isnt sought tourism in the caribbean will take a dip. how can workers ensure complete guest satisfaction when they feel unsafe or feel that in the event of something it will all be in vain as their loved ones wont get justice. our leaders need to get involved

    • mention
      April 22, 2019

      I think there are somethings to ask. How would the national reacted if victim was from Anguilla and also how would they deal with the situation if the victim was the white guy. We keep on talking about O.E.C.S unity but this thing is lacking and we keep fighting with each other every day. I haven’t seen any benefits in this union but only division. We should have form a team as a group and prevent bail and never allow this guy to leave. Even if the crime had happen in Anguilla Trump would maybe demand that offender be tried in the U.S if it was the white man who was the victim. I hope Anguilla don’t let this murderer go just for tourism dollars.

  15. concerned
    April 20, 2019

    he has changed his story many times. But the facts we know are that the guy whom he killed was much smaller than him, was wearing his work uniform, and was a maintenance personnel at the hotel where the crime was committed. The accused had no bodily injuries the deceased had marks from blows all over his body.

  16. Indeed
    April 20, 2019

    This makes no sense to me, if a man enters your home with your family with evil intention you should have the right to do whatever is necessary to neutralize the threat.
    If you go easy on him, and he pulls out a gun and end up shooting your child, what them? so you supposed to play by certain rules but the criminal doesn’t?
    Somebody comes to my house and shows me a knife, I taking him out, next thing you show mercy and he pull out a gun? you dont know what the man has under his shirt. If I get first chance on you I taking it and i’ll go up stockfarm.
    Everybody else talking about why he get bail talking nonsense, i’d love to see how you would react if it was you in the situation.
    The came into his home, a safe area he made for his family and shame on him for defending it? if the headline read “Family murdered in Antigua” you’ll would be singing a different song.
    GTFO

    • Dee
      April 22, 2019

      Come on! Read before you start shooting off your mouth! You have the basic facts all wrong. IT WAS AT A HOTEL NOT THE ASSAILENT’S HOME. THE MAINTENANCE MAN WAS CALLED TO THE ROOM AND ENDED UP DEAD!!! What happened in the room that lead to this violent death is unclear. What about that don’t you understand? Get the basic facts straight or be quiet!

      By the way…. The incident took place in Anguilla not Antigua! Nothing you say makes sense!

  17. Amomrah kobadi
    April 20, 2019

    WHITE PRIVILAGE EVEN IN A BLACK NATION.

    • Objective
      April 20, 2019

      Bob Marley and Marcus Garvey told us to emancipate ourselves from mental slavery, and to know our history. We are not learning. So they divide us and rule us. The Leadership in politics and business are not compassionate. The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all evil. Trust no man. Put your trust in God. He is our source , and only source.

    • April 21, 2019

      White privilege in a black nation??? Umm, no. Random white, with no history of violence kills a guy and the Anguilla government lets him go?? Tells me there’s a lot more to the story and government thinks the employee was likely more culpable.

  18. Sue him
    April 20, 2019

    An example need to be made. We want the tourist money but not at the cost of our young men. I read this American is wealthy so he used his influence to go back. Most likely he won’t take jail. He is responsible. Sue him. They money won’t bring your husband/son back but will send a message.

  19. April 20, 2019

    He should not be granted bail because he is an American citizen and the chance of them getting him back to stand trial once he
    live the country is slim

    • Rich
      April 22, 2019

      He will 100% come back as Anguilla has an extradition treaty with the US. If he fails to an arrest warrant will be issued and he will be picked up and bought back to Anguilla. Don’t let the facts get in the way of your hatred… Racism is racism and cuts both ways, and is abhorrent all the same.

  20. April 20, 2019

    Hello and good morning my people. Well I just read an article in the New York Post which stated that the perpetrator is a financial advisor on Wall Street who worked for UBS and he’s represented by Astaphan . No wonder why he wasn’t charges with murder.

    ADMIN: To clarify, his lawyer is Thomas Astaphan not Anthony Astaphan.

  21. April 20, 2019

    Hello and good morning my people. First I want to offer my condolence to the victim family. Now based on the information in the article I can’t see why they couldn’t charge the perpetrator with Murder . If he’s not convicted of manslaugher then the lower crime is assault which is a lower included charge. The victim was struck in the head while being choke to death therefore it’s murder second degree but Manslaughter first and second degree should be lesser included charges . If the perpetrator isn’t convicted of murder then he can be convicted of manslaughter but there isn’t any murder charges therefore I suspect this perpetrator will walk free after a trial.

  22. Iamanidiot
    April 20, 2019

    Correct me if im wrong, but I read he was at home with his wife and children when the individual came in an tried to rob him. Doesnt that give him the right to defend himself and family?

    • Truth and Justice
      April 20, 2019

      He was at a hotel with his family, he specifically requested for the young man to come to his room. Something occured in the bathroom. Security was called and he refused to let the man go, causing asphyxiation and blunt force trauma to the head. Hapgood said Mylez, the young man that he killed was robbing him. It does not add up. Why would he rob him of he specially called for him? Keep in mind Hapgood is ex-military and 300 pounds compared to scrawny Mylez. Why did he not let him go when security arrived? He said Mylez assulted him but there is no evidence on Mylez to support that. Nothing is adding up.

    • April 20, 2019

      Yes, he had the “right to defend his family” if that’s what he was doing. What if that wasn’t the case? The ONLY one that could tell the truth, or shed light on the truth, is dead. We’ll never know. It’s possible someone else knows the truth, (i.e. employer) but I don’t think that truth will come from the assailant. That man was released too quickly. He might never stand trial. It’s sad on every angle. The best defense is playing the victim. Remember, truth is determined by hearing BOTH sides, but there’s only ONE side, with his family.

    • Objective
      April 20, 2019

      A dead man cannot talk

      • Iamanidiot
        April 20, 2019

        How did he end up inside the person’s house? The incident didnt happen on the street.

    • concerned
      April 20, 2019

      he has changed his story many times. But the facts we know are that the guy whom he killed was much smaller than him, was wearing his work uniform, and was a maintenance personnel at the hotel where the crime was committed. The accused had no bodily injuries the deceased had marks from blows all over his body.

    • justice for kenny
      April 20, 2019

      kenny was killed on his job. mr hapgood and his family were guests at the hotel where kenny worked as a maintenance man. kenny went to the room on orders from the front desk. it is alleged that mr hapgood ask for him specifically. he claimed to have killed him in self defense however hotel security came to diffuse the matter but even they couldnt control the crazed 300 pound caucasian tourist. kenny was under 200 pounds and petite. lets be logical, you on your shift,in uniform at your workplace where all the staff knows you; you have a wife and young daughter at home you really think any intellectual human would attack a man more than twice his size? This man is originally from south africa these people have very little regard to black lives; they dont see us as people. this is the height of injustice and as a nation we need to be the voice of this deceased young man. we always cry about our youth n how they stay but this one was doing it right, respectable hardworking and honest.

      ADMIN: While initially reported that Hapgood was from South Africa this has since been refuted. He was confused with someone who seems to be a different man: Gavin Hapgood-Strickland.

    • Friend
      April 20, 2019

      Shut the heck up.why would he go rob him n he has money in his pocket???140lbs man tried to rob a 300 lbs man ex military????????
      Gavin called the font desk to ask for Kenny specificallllyyyyyyy.

    • More sides than one
      April 20, 2019

      No the accused called the front desk and asked for the young man who was a maintenance engineer at the resort to be sent to his room The young man went to his room and came out dead….

  23. Skillz Da Boss
    April 20, 2019

    I hope you guys know he’s not in jail and he already left Anguilla. So sad

  24. Friend
    April 20, 2019

    Here’s the deal,police should’ve investigated.
    1 who answered the phone when Gavin called for maintenance.
    2 what did he want?
    3 was there really a problem with any hi g I. His room to make him call for a maintenance man
    4 how he know Kenny for him to even ask for him specifically??
    5 why didn’t he release kenny when security tried to make hi. Release Kenny?
    6 why did the judge grant him bailllll!!???! To many questions unanswered so sad

  25. Check it out
    April 20, 2019

    Guys… You all are late on this news and the info you have is stale. This man posted bail and is already out of Anguilla

    • %
      April 20, 2019

      Our court/justice system in those small islands needs an overhaul !!!!
      The man should have been behind bars waiting for his trial..He used his size and training to murder the young man,and the rouge is out of Anguilla?.These are the kinds of things which cause people to take the law into their own hands …He murdered the man, and will give all sorts of flimsy reasons!!!!

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