Kallie Hapgood wanted Donald Trump‘s help in the case against her husband on the Caribbean island of Anguilla, where he is accused of killing a hotel maintenance worker while on a family vacation.
So she turned to his favourite TV show.
From the Fox & Friends studio on Monday, the Connecticut woman pleaded for the US president to intervene.
She described her husband, Scott Hapgood – a trader with UBS Investment Bank – as a “loving man” who “did nothing wrong”.
She added a dose of praise for Mr Trump. “We need help,” she said during the five-minute segment. “I’ve seen Trump help Americans in peril around the globe and we really need his help.”
Ms Hapgood’s appeal seems to have worked. Not long after her appearance, the president announced on Twitter that he would be “looking into” the case – another instance of the president involving himself in a criminal case outside of US jurisdiction.
A bellman who arrived in the hotel room before the police told the newspaper that Mitchel seemed to be struggling for air as Mr Hapgood held him down.
The worker, Geshuane Clarke, said Mr Hapgood refused to release Mitchel before authorities arrived, insisting that the trapped man was breathing. Mr Clarke claimed Mitchel tried to speak, but Mr Hapgood told him: “You don’t have a thing to say.”
Mitchel died soon after. A coroner ruled that the cause was asphyxiation from the struggle, and the American banker was charged with manslaughter. Amid the uproar that followed, Anguilla police warned the accused killer that they could not guarantee his safety.
Months later, a revised autopsy report obtained by The New York Times derailed the original account of Mitchel’s death. The new report said it may have happened not as a result of the altercation in the hotel room but rather from a cocaine overdose.
The change was based on newly released toxicology tests that showed Mitchel had a lethal level of the drug in his system.
Yet the criminal case remains ongoing. Asked why that is, Ms Hapgood told Fox & Friends hosts Steve Doocy and Ainsley Earhardt: “It’s a great question and it’s why I’m here. We need help.”
She said her husband, who has returned to the island three times for court proceedings, is “an amazing father” and “doesn’t deserve this”.
“Trump, I’ve seen him do amazing things for Americans,” she said. “And Scott Hapgood is the type of American you want to help.”
The president apparently agreed. In his tweet about the case, he wrote: ”Will be looking into the Scott Hapgood case, and the Island of Anguilla. Something looks and sounds very wrong. I know Anguilla will want to see this case be properly and justly resolved!”
He tagged Fox & Friends, Ms Earhardt and a man named Steve Ducey, who tweeted that Fox News viewers “mistakenly tag me a lot, just not... this fox news viewer”.
Later Monday, Ms Hapgood said the family had not yet heard from the president, the Stamford Advocate reported. But, she said, they were “so thrilled” he was interested in the case.
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