An American teen released after 32 days in a Cayman Islands prison for breaking COVID-19 quarantine says 'I deserved it'

Cayman Compass / ABC 7 NewsA screenshot from the moment Skylar Mack was escorted to a police car after pleading guilty to breaking quarantine on the Cayman Islands.
  • Skylar Mack arrived home last week after spending 32 days in a Cayman Islands prison.
  • The 18-year-old was sentenced to two months in prison after breaking the island’s required 14-day COVID-19 quarantine.
  • Skylar Mack told “Good Morning America” that she made a “selfish” decision, and that the blowback against her actions is “justified.”
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

On Friday, American teen Skylar Mack arrived in Atlanta, Georgia, after spending 32 days in a Cayman Islands prison for breaking the territory’s mandatory quarantine.

This was the first time the 18-year-old stepped foot on US land since travelling to the Cayman Islands in November.

The college student and her boyfriend, Vanjae Ramgeet, were sentenced to two months in prison after Mack broke the government’s strict 14-day quarantine.

The couple served about half the sentence.

According to a statement, the government approved the couple’s “applications for pre-discharge leave.” Laws in the Cayman Islands allow a conditional release when a person is 30 days away from “the date of that prisoner’s anticipated discharge,” according to the island’s Prison Law.

The Cayman Islands have reported 380 cases and two deaths since the start of the pandemic, according to a tracker on their government website.

Since her release from prison, Mack has said her actions were “selfish.”

The student was charged for breaking the mandatory quarantine

Mack arrived at Grand Cayman Island on November 27, where she was required to quarantine for 14 days, as Insider previously reported.

But two days into the quarantine, Mack removed the government-issued tracking device to attend a jet-skiing competition her boyfriend was competing in.

According to the couple’s attorney, Jonathon Hughes, police were called to the competition when organisers were notified that Mack had broken the quarantine.

Mack was charged with leaving her home during the strict 14-day quarantine, and her boyfriend was charged with aiding and abetting.

After resentences and appeals, the couple was sentenced to two months in prison

Initially, Mack and Ramgeet were sentenced to community service and a $US2,600 fine each.

But the Cayman Islands director of public prosecutions, Patrick Moran, filed a notice of appeal that the sentences were “unduly lenient.” The court ruled in favour of Moran, and on December 15 the couple was resentenced to four months in prison.

After Mack received the four-month sentence, Mack’s grandmother urged President Donald Trump to help.

The couple appealed the case, and on December 22, they were resentenced to two months in prison.

On January 15, both Ramgeet and Mack were released from custody. Ramgeet is from the Cayman Islands, and Mack boarded a plane home the same day.

The student admits she ‘deserved it’

Since being released from prison, Mack has apologised for her actions.

“It was a selfish decision. There’s no reason that I can give you to grant me a second chance. I don’t expect anybody to ever forgive me, but I would like for them to at least let me be able to show them that I did learn from it,” Mack told “Good Morning America.”

Mack went on to say that the anger and disappointment directed towards her are “justified.”

“I deserved it. I was like, ‘You know what, I made this mistake, and it sucks, you know, but you did it to yourself,'” Mack told GMA.

Meanwhile, Mack’s grandmother told ABC News she is glad to have her granddaughter home.

“It’s the biggest relief. I finally slept through the night,” the grandmother said. “And it’s kind of hard to fall asleep when you know someone you love so much is not sleeping, and that they’re uncomfortable, and I know she’s a tough girl but she had to be scared.”

Skylar Mack’s attorney did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

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