(WFSB) — The man accused of killing an Anguillan man is being sued by the family.
Scott Hapgood and his family were on vacation in Anguilla when Kenny Mitchel, 27, came to their room.
What led to the handyman’s death is now in dispute.
The attorney for the family of Kenny Mitchel, said on Monday his clients are looking forward to telling their side of the story.
“Mr. Hapgood is not going back to Anguilla, so Anguilla has to come to him,” Attorney Steve Seligman said.
Hapgood is fighting a manslaughter charge in Anguilla. Hapgood refuses to return for his trial because he said his safety can’t be guaranteed.
Seligman filed a lawsuit wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of Mitchel’s family.
“This is a man whose life was valuable, whose life was important and whose life should not have ended,” Seligman said.
The lawsuit says Mitchel went to Hapgood’s hotel room, and that Hapgood attacked him and pinned him to the floor. It also points out the initial cause of death was asphyxiation.
A toxicology report later found that Mitchel had more than a lethal dose of cocaine in his system. But Seligman is confident the evidence will show that it was still Hapgood who caused his death.
“The forensic pathologist did point out the presence of these drugs as a possible not a likely factor,” Seligman said.
The case is filed in federal court in Bridgeport, Connecticut but will rely on Anguillan law.
Hapgood has claimed that Mitchel came to his room on his own. Hapgood says he acted in self-defense, and Mitchel died of an overdose.
Seligman says this lawsuit will allow the facts to come out.
“The precise circumstances of what transpired that day are not known to anybody,” Seligman said.