..pleads for pardon
Blessing Okorite, Port Harcourt
A Rivers State High Court in Port Harcourt has remanded Gracious David West, 39 years old Port Harcourt serial killer in prison custody over alleged murder of several ladies in the state.
The Rivers State Police Command had filed a suit in PHC/3426/CR/2019, between the accused person and the Inspector General of Police, on 10 count boarding on conspiracy and murder of nine victims.
According to the charges read, West is alleged to have unlawfully killed several women in different hotels and guest houses in parts of Rivers State which is a punishable offence under Section 319 sub 1, Cap 37. Volume 2 laws of Rivers State 1999.
West, however, pleaded guilty to the killing of nine females in hotel, not guilty to the last charge boarding on attempted murder of one of the young ladies in a hotel around Bende Street in Port Harcourt township, stating that he only tied the lady’s hands and legs and left her on the bed.
The accused also pleaded that the court should have mercy, said that he committed the crime under influence of evil spirit.
Upon taking plea, the Rivers State Government through the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice Zaccheus Adango applied to take over the prosecution of the matter which was not opposed by the parties.
Mr Chidi Eke, the Principal State Counsel from the Rivers State Ministry of Justice made the application in court.
Mr Vincent Chuku represented the accused in the case while SP Gladys Imegu was the first prosecution.
The trail Judge Justice Adolphus Enebeli after listening to the accused plea and counsels arguments on the guilty plea, entered that the accused person pleaded not guilty in the charge, making references to different sections of the criminal code of the law of Federal Government and state respectively.
Enebeli further granted the application of Rivers State Government to take over the matter, expressing readiness to give speedy hearing of the case.
He adjourned till November 18, 21, 27, 29 and December 4, 2019 for hearing and remanded the suspect in prison.
Meanwhile, the suspect, West, had during proceedings told the court that he preferred to tell the truth so he could be pardoned, noting that he committed the crimes unconsciously.
He said: “My Lord, I have something to say, I killed all other girls in the hotels but that one in Bendel street which is on the tenth charge, I did not kill her, I only tie her on the chair.
“My Lord, all these things I did I did it because I was possessed by evil spirits, I want the court to forgive me, that is why I said the truth”.