Fatal crash lands drunk driver in jail

| 20/11/2018 | 26 Comments
Cayman Islands, Cayman News Service

Cayman Islands courts, Grand Cayman

(CNS): Warren Samuel Hogarth (56) from North Side was jailed Tuesday for two years and five months and disqualified from driving for five years following his conviction for causing the death of Denvil Mitchell (40) by dangerous driving in 2016. As he delivered his sentence ruling, visiting judge, Acting Justice Roger Chapple, said it was a “tragic case”, and while Hogarth had not set out with the intention to kill anyone, he nevertheless “chose to drive after drinking a substantial amount of Nicaraguan Rum”. In the wake of the crash Hogarth was found to be almost twice over the legal limit when he had driven his Kia Sportage directly into the path of Mitchell’s motorbike.

After the crash, which happened in February 2016, accident investigators concluded that Hogarth had failed to properly negotiate a bend in the road near to the junction of Shamrock Road and Hirst Road because his responses were impacted by alcohol. Hogarth’s vehicle had driven across the road into the oncoming path of Mitchell, who was found to be driving lawfully, within the speed limit and unimpaired by alcohol.

Hogarth initially denied being at fault as he had no memory of the crash, and it was some time after accident reports were completed that he admitted his guilt. As a result, the judge gave him only a 20% reduction on the three-year term he originally imposed for his guilty plea.

Explaining his sentence, the judge noted that Hogarth had been convicted more than 30 years ago for causing the death of another person in a road collision through careless driving. Although there was no record on file of this case, Hogarth had owned up to that previous offence, which the judge said he had taken into consideration to arrive at the three-year term.

He spoke about the challenges such cases present and the “palpable remorse” of Hogarth, who had not intended to kill Mitchell. But the judge said that to take to the wheel after consuming so much alcohol was the “height of irresponsibility, as in the wrong hands a car can be a lethal weapon, which is still not properly understood”.

Justice Chapple said the message of deterrence also had to be that drivers will go to prison if they cause the death of another person because of drunk driving.

Following the sentence ruling, Hogarth was taken into custody to begin serving the jail term, having been on bail since he was charged in 2017.

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Category: Courts, Crime

Comments (26)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Why are people so easy to judge. 30yrs between non similar crimes?!!? Northside stands with you Warren. It’s a sad case indeed but what about that golden child Tibbetts?

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    • land crab says:

      It never ceases to amaze me how Caymanians can support their own no matter what henous crimes they have committed.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    I see someone is blaming the taxi drivers for this too , taxi rides are cheaper than taking someone’s life, and going to prison no matter how expensive they are , always remember this after you get drunk people

  3. Anonymous says:

    sad situation…
    pity the government protects the rip-off taxi cartel by preventing uber being allowed here and preventing public bus from running after certain times at night.
    people need reliable affordable forms of public transport.
    the taxi system here is a disgrace and cig is fully to blame.

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  4. Bertie : B says:

    When Drunken Fools get out of jail and get employment they should be forced to hand over a portion of their pay every week , this money can go towards the kids of the person they killed through Stupidity and Ignorance , if their are no kids then give the money to the deceased persons immediate family . When will these jerks learn that drunk driving Kills innocents .

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  5. Anonymous says:

    Not enough of a sentence. Cayman needs stiffer penalties for DUI offences. Only the selfish and immoral drive drunk.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    As usual typical cayman non justice. Every life matters. If you take one you lose yours.
    Wake up Cayman. Condolences to the family members left with the daily reminder they cannot see their loved one again.

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  7. George Town says:

    The Justice system here is not swift or fast enough in executing its judgements …

    I mean a case from 2016 and now he is being sentenced, and the seriousness of the offense is watered down?

    Come on! Cayman, need to do better! The timing for punishment is too relaxed! If this was in the old days ….

    You figure it out ?

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  8. Anonymous says:

    Wasn’t he involved in a crash where death occurred some years ago?

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Those who don’t know Warren find it easy to cast stones.

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    • meme says:

      I think you seem a bit naïve or foolish to pass those comments. He is a grown person, who has lived through this before (stated in the article). Sooooo the fact that he didn’t learn his lesson the first time, speaks a lot about him.

      It really isn’t that hard to go to the liquor store and buy your bottle and stay home and get wasted, then pass out on your floor, sofa, bed, outside lawn.
      It is just as easy to call a cab, a friend, or sleep in your car until you sober up enough.

      I cast stones because someone lost a son, a loved one, a brother, an uncle because another person was too stupid to make the adult decision.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I find it easy to cast stones at the sort of selfish pond life that drink drive and kill innocent people.

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  10. Only daughter says:

    That’s what you all talking about?
    Like for real…………..i lost my dad.
    He’s gone and he’s never coming back,no matter how hard i try can’t stop wishing he was here……i will never be able to pick up the phone and call him. This man took everything away from me when he killed my father 3 years will never be enough and the justice system is complete bullshit.

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  11. Anonymous says:

    No justice for the family and friends of denvil Mitchell. Some one should question this judgement. And the light sentence given.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    No record of previous case with same offence. DUI causing death. The penalty is just a slap on the wrist and it’s a repeat offence. The Cayman justice system serving no justice to law abiding citizens and the family who suffers. This murderer must be laughing.

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  13. Anonymous says:

    Can you imagine having the death of 2 people on your hands because you couldn’t be bothered to get a ride home…
    We are all guilty to a certain extent. Today, I am making a pledge to myself to make sure that I leave my car behind once I order the 3rd.

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    • Dennis says:

      The problem he was home in North Side where he was drinking and leave to go in town to drink more alcohol.

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  14. Anonymous says:

    He should never drive again.

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