The suspected mastermind behind the gruesome murder of a 55 year old widow, Janet Nnenna Ogbonnaya in Abuja has confessed to the police that he mistakenly gave the woman overdose of the drug that killed her in an attempt to force her to the spend the night in his house.
The suspect identified as Johnson Emmanuel and two of his siblings; Gideon and Success who helped him cover up the crime were arrested by operatives of Inspector General of Police, Intelligence Response Team(IRT) in their home town, Isi-ekenesi, Ideato area of Imo State where they relocated to after the incident.
According the Force Public Relations Officer, DCP Frank Mbah, Police acted based on the complaint of one Chinedu, son of the deceased who said that they received a call from a suspected kidnapper who abducted their mother, a native of Ozuitem in Bende LGA of Abia State and demanded N5million ransom.
Upon their arrest, Johnson who has been a Facebook friend of the deceased confessed that he laced her drink with drug during her visit to his residence, which led to her death. He buried her remains in a septic tank with the help of his brothers before calling the family of the deceased demanding for N5million ransom.
They led a team of investigators alongside pathologists to Johnson’s residence at Wumba District, Lokogoma, Abuja where the victim’s decomposing body was exhumed from a septic tank.
After the raggae
Describing the deceased as affectionate, Johnson, 38, who is the owner of the property where she was buried claimed that they met several years ago after he returned back to the country.
“I am from Ideato South and currently divorced with four children. Another man stole my wife from me while I was in abroad working. I travelled to Qatar in 2008 to work and came back in 2013 when my five years work permit expired and discovered that my wife was pregnant for another man. Naturally we separated.
“I was able to build a house at Wumba area in Lokogoma. I belong to a Facebook group known as Esau’s group (sons and daughters) which is mainly for members of Cherubim and Seraphim. Madam Nnenna is known as mother in Isreal and I am senior apostle in order. It was when I came back that I started chatting with her that I am a member of that group and two years ago, we started dating. Our meeting point is always my house since I am living alone and no matter how I try to convince her, she will never agree to sleep in my house. She simply told me that she does not like sleeping outside because of her children. I wanted her to sleep, so I decided to sedate her on her next visit so that by the time she woke up it will be morning.
“On May 14, 2020, she came in the evening and asked that I should buy her food. I had soup in the house and because of ulcer she does not eat eba and soup. I went to Shoprite in Jabi and bought fried rice for her and on my way I stopped at a pharmacy and asked the pharmacist to give me a drug that can make one sleep. I lied that my brother had a dislocation and was in pains. He gave me a sachet and asked me to give him two tablets. Normally , I used to buy a pack of Hollandia juice for her anytime she visits. She will only take a cup and take the rest home. I felt that will be the case that day so I added more tablets in the pack of juice since that was the only way I can put the drug unnoticed.
“After eating , we had sex and she slept off and around 9pm I touched her again while she was still sleeping. I also slept off and in the morning she was still sleeping. I went out and bought bread and tea for breakfast. I was so happy that she stayed back, that was why I did not bother to wake her up but she was still alive. After eating, I kept her own on the table and went to work. I came back around 3pm and discovered that she was still lying on the bed, this was when I panicked and touched her. It was then I discovered that she was stiff and was no longer breathing.”
Then the cover up
Faced with the consequence of his action if found, Johnson came up with a plan to cover his track. “I was devastated when I discovered that she was dead and I knew that if I raise alarm, no one will believe my story. I waited till around 8pm and called my junior brother, Gideon. I knew it was only my family that will keep my secret. I told him what happened and he suggested that I dump her by the roadside so that someone will identify her and tell her family. I refused because my neighbors might notice while we are moving her out.
“I asked him to help me open the septic tank and I wrapped madam with my bed sheets and threw her inside. Luckily for me while we were trying to bury her body, heavy rain fell. I knew that the family might start looking for her and police will definitely check her last call, this was why I called her family with her phone. I pretended that I am a kidnapper and demanded for the sum of N5million. I made the call so that they will assume that she was kidnapped and remove their attention from me. I switched off her phone and threw away the sim card.
I decided to keep her car. I took it to the panel beater, changed the color, registered it in my name and took the car to my village. I paid a policewoman friend N60,000 to drive the car down to my village. The policewoman does not know the source of the car. I also knew that I needed to run, so within a week, I sold my house at a giveaway price. I sold it to one man at the price of N700,000 with the excuse that I lost my wife and needed money urgently to bury her. I travelled down to my village where I was when police tracked and arrested me. I was desperate to run away,” he narrated.
Ready for the consequence
When accused of luring the woman to his home with the intent to steal from her, Johnson said, “ She is a good woman and has taken care of me that I fell in love with her. Anytime she needs me, she will call me and I am always there for her because she is a good woman. She is very generous with the little that she has. She is a fashion designer and on the day I lost her, she told me of her plans to borrow money from the bank for business. Even if I wanted to run away with her car, I will do so and she will not even report me. I have offended God, Nigerians and her family. I am just pleading for mercy, any punishment that they will give me, I will take it in good faith,” he pleaded.
Confirming what his elder brother said, Gideon who is 31 claimed that he was forced to keep his brother’s secret because they were related by blood. “Even that night when he called me, I was angry that I was the one that he called to help cover his secret. He told me that he does not want anyone to know about the incident and I advised him to take the car and the body of the woman to the road so that people can identify the body but he refused.
“I decided to help him because he is my blood brother. The mistake I made was not reporting the matter to the police. I am begging God to have mercy on me. Let him face the crime he committed. I am a builder and he is the one who encouraged me to relocate to Abuja last year. After that night I have not stepped in to that house although he later called to tell me that he is relocating to the village and that he kept the car. I am really sorry,” he stated.