TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
A Rivers State High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has convicted and sentenced a serial killer, Gracious David-West to death by hanging for the multiple murder of several women in hotels in different parts of the state. David-West, who was charged with 10 counts of murder and attempted murder reportedly committed the crime in hotels where he strangled his victims to death and thereafter used white cloth to tie their hands and legs before robbing them of their valuables in 2019.
The trial judge, Justice Adolphus Enebeli in his judgement yesterday said David-West should be hanged on his neck until he is dead. Justice Enebeli stated that the prosecution was able to prove the case beyond reasonable doubts with all the evidence and witnesses brought before the court. The judge based his judgement on voluntary statement and confession of David-West, as well as the CCTV footage of the convict, which was tendered and displayed during trial. He said the evidence proved that David-West was guilty of the crime which he noted was carried out between July 20 and September, 2019. The court discharged and acquitted the second defendant, Nimi ThankGod, who was accused of dumping the remains of one of the victims of the serial killer in a dustbin. Justice Enebeli said that the prosecution was not able to prove the case that ThankGod actually committed the crime.
Speaking with journalists outside the courtroom, the lead state prosecuting counsel, Chidi Ekeh, said the judgement would serve as a deterrent to other persons with such intention. He added that the second defendant was discharged and acquitted because it was difficult to prove to the court that he committed the crime. Counsel for the convict, Vincent Chukwu, said when given opportunity by his client, the judgement would be appealed. On his part, Lezina Amegua, counsel for ThankGod expressed happiness over the judgement, which exonorated his client.