unilad
Advert

Georgia Teen Sentenced To Four Months In Prison For Breaking Quarantine To See Boyfriend In Cayman Islands

by : Cameron Frew on : 22 Dec 2020 08:02
Teen Sentenced To Four Months In Prison For Breaking Quarantine To See Boyfriendskylarmack/Instagram/Vanjae Ramgeet/Facebook

A Georgia teen has been sentenced to four months in prison for breaking COVID-19 protocols to see her boyfriend.

Skylar Mack, 18, had flown to Grand Cayman on November 27 to visit Vanjae Ramgeet, 24, who was taking part in a jet ski competition.

Advert

According to a Cayman Islands government press release, the 18-year-old had tested negative on for coronavirus arrival but had not yet completed her mandatory 14-day isolation period. There’s been a total of 316 confirmed cases in the country, with two deaths.

Check out a news report about Skylar’s sentence below:

Loading…

The pair’s attorney, Jonathon Hughes, explained to BuzzFeed News how Skylar had been given a geofencing wristband and mobile phone to track her movements during the initial isolation period, in addition to signing a document forbidding her from leaving her residence.

Advert

However, just two days later, Skylar removed the wristband in order to watch Vanjae compete at the competition, alongside many spectators she interacted with for seven hours. Organisers of the event first noticed Skylar, later calling the police. Neither Skylar nor Vanjae denied the accusations, and were soon transported to a government quarantine facility.

They were both initially sentenced to 40 hours of community service and handed a $2,600 fine for breaching quarantine. However, Patrick Moran, Cayman Islands director of public prosecutions, urged: ‘These offenses should have been met with far more stringent measures.’

Georgia Teen Sentenced To Four Months In Prison For Breaking Quarantine To See Boyfriend In Cayman IslandsSkylar Mack/Facebook

During an appeal hearing, he added: ‘When it comes to a matter of deterrence, the sentence imposed [is] likely to have little to no effect on other like-minded individuals.’

Advert

Hughes thought a prison sentence was too harsh for a first-time offender, especially considering her guilty plea, the Cayman Compass reports. Vanjae’s prize money from the event was also taken away, and a temporary ban from riding was issued.

However, citing their ‘selfishness and arrogance’, Grand Court Justice Roger Chapple sentenced the couple to four months in prison. While saying Vanjae should have known better, he said Skylar’s actions were ‘entirely deliberate and planned, as evidenced by her desire to switch her wristband the day before to a looser one that she was then able to remove’.

Georgia Teen Sentenced To Four Months In Prison For Breaking Quarantine To See Boyfriend In Cayman IslandsVanjae Ramgeet/Facebook

To date, the government says ‘the vast majority’ of thousands of approved travellers have abided by the country’s quarantine rules. However, numerous other breaches are currently under investigation.

Advert

In a letter given to the Caymanian Times, Skylar said she had ‘abused’ the opportunity to visit the country ‘during these trying times’. She also described it as ‘the biggest mistake of [her] life’.

She wrote: ‘My actions spoke of nothing but complete disrespect by disobeying my quarantine rules. I am aware that the Cayman Islands Government has done nothing but dedicate extreme caution to combat the spread of COVID-19, for this the country and its citizens can be extremely proud; I made a mistake, and words cannot express how sorry I am for this.’

Cayman Compass Skylar MackCayman Compass

Her grandmother Jeanne Mack has written to US president Donald Trump for help, although she told the Today show: ‘We’re not asking for her to get an exception. We’re asking for her not to be the exception… she cries. She wants to come home. She knows she made a mistake. She owns up to that, but she’s pretty hysterical right now.’

Advert

Her father Dennis Mack also told CBS 46 News: ‘I don’t know why someone is taking it so personal or [has] such a vendetta toward my daughter or toward an American 18-year-old girl who was there on a vacation and who made a mistake. It’s absolutely heart-wrenching that you take someone so special… the rest of her life is getting torn away from her.’

Hughes is now tasked with seeking a lower sentence for the pair at the Cayman Islands Court of Appeal in a hearing today, December 22.

The press release adds: ‘The public and travellers should be reminded that if found in breach of mandatory isolation they will be warned for intended prosecution and are liable on conviction to a fine of ten thousand dollars and imprisonment for two years.’

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]

Most Read StoriesMost Read

News

Ghislaine Maxwell Trial: Housekeeper Says He Drove Underage Girls To Mansion On Her Orders

Cameron Frew

After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian University with an NCTJ and BJTC-accredited Multimedia Journalism degree, Cameron ventured into the world of print journalism at The National, while also working as a freelance film journalist on the side, becoming an accredited Rotten Tomatoes critic in the process. He's now left his Scottish homelands and taken up residence at UNILAD as a journalist.

Topics: News, Coronavirus, COVID-19, Now, Quarantine

Credits

BuzzFeed News and 4 others
  1. BuzzFeed News

    An American Teen Was Sentenced To 4 Months In Prison For Breaking COVID-19 Quarantine In The Cayman Islands

  2. Cayman Islands Government

    Traveller Quarantine breach

  3. Cayman Compass

    4 months for ‘selfish’, ‘arrogant’ quarantine breachers

  4. Caymanian Times

    Skylar Mack Dearest Apologies

  5. CBS 46 News

    Loganville Teen Imprisoned Overseas For Breaking Quarantine