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Blumenthal, Darien man accused in Anguilla hotel worker killing hold press conference

A Darien man accused of choking and killing a hotel worker in Anguilla during a fight, is scheduled to appear with U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal Monday mornin...

A Darien man accused of choking and killing a hotel worker in Anguilla during a fight, is scheduled to appear with U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal Monday morning.

44-year-old Scott Hapgood faces manslaughter charges in connection with that death.

Hapgood and his family had been vacationing in Anguilla when he says Mitchel came to their room uninvited and a fight ensued.

A revised autopsy report done of Mitchelsays he had a lethal amount of cocaine in his system at the time of his death.

Obtained by The New York Times, the revised autopsy report, which includes toxicology and is dated September 3 reads, "Acute cocaine toxicity could have been a potentially independent cause of death in the known circumstances," quoting Dr. Stephen King, who oversaw the autopsy.

The original autopsy released in April and obtained by CNN revealed the cause of Mitchel's death was "prone restraint and positional asphyxia," Anguilla police spokesman Randy Dick said in a statement. There were also signs of blunt force trauma to the head, torso and abdomen, the report said.

“We are still shocked that a simple vacation we were looking forward to…. turned into a nightmare,” says Scott Hapgood.

Darien’s  First Select woman Jayme Stevenson stated, “I know that Scott did what any parent would do…any of us would do. Protect their children.”

Scott’s international lawyer Juliya Arbisman, said police have informed them of threats “multiple times” since August 1.

“We know that the threat was sufficient to have triggered what the police refer to as an Osman warning, which is an obligation under the UK law to provide disclosure and information that there is an existing threat to life,” she said.

Hapgood has also been threatened online, according to Arbisman. In April, the Royal Anguilla Police Force decried users’ comments on its Facebook page that “have no foundation in fact and are likely to incite racial hatred and can prejudice a jury especially since they will be chosen from among the community of Anguilla.”

Monday morning, federal and local leaders called  transparency in this case as it moves through the judicial system in the United Kingdom.

“Basic fairness and due process which is threatened by a secret processing without a secret proceeding without guarantees of  representation,” says U.S. Senator Blumenthal.

Mitchel’s death

On April 13, minutes after Hapgood’s daughters, then 11 and 13 years old, arrived back in their room, a man dressed in a hotel uniform knocked on their door, the family said in a statement shortly after the incident.

“A stranger knocked on their hotel door to fix his sink that wasn’t actually broke,’ says Darien First Select woman Jayme Stevenson.

Hapgood said the sinks weren’t broken, as far as he knew, but the man could look, his family said.

According to the family, Mitchel was armed and demanded money. A fight broke between Mitchel and Hapgood.

An autopsy revealed the cause of Mitchel’s death was “prone restraint and positional asphyxia,” Anguilla police spokesman Randy Dick said in a statement. There were also signs of blunt force trauma to the head, torso and abdomen, the report said.

The autopsy report was later overturned after a toxicology report for Mitchell came out weeks later.

“A toxicology report revealed the attacker had 2 times the fatal amount of cocaine, alcohol, marijuana, and other substances in his system,” says Firsts selectwoman Stevenson.

The family argues the latest autopsy report shows Hapgood did not kill Mitchell during the fight.

Hapgood was taken to the hospital for medical treatment and was later arrested and charged with manslaughter.

Hapgood is due back in court in Anguilla on November 11th.