Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Killer Policeman to Die By Hanging

An Abuja High Court presided over by Justice Abubakar Talba Monday sentenced a police corporal, Obanla Julius to death by hanging for killing a motorist at a police check-point without justification.

In pronouncing the death sentence, the court said the prosecution had established and proven a case of culpable homicide.

"Julius is guilty as charged and I so hold respectively," the Judge said. Despite the plea by the accussed person's lawyer, C. N. Nosike, Justice Talba refused the plea for mercy by the accused's lawyer.

The judge said section 221 of the Penal Code did not avail him any room for discretion in matter involving the killing of an innocent person.

He said, "The court will fail in its duty, if it is incapable of imposing necessary punishment commensurate with the offence committed."

The judge noted that there had been incessant killing of innocent citizens of the country in the manner in which the police corporal killed his victim. The judge said, "I therefore sentence Julius to death by hanging".

In a one-count charge filed by the Attorney General of the Federation and the Minister of Justice, Corporal Obanla Julius was charged with culpable homicide under section 221 of the Penal Code of Northern Niger for killing one Shagari Haruna at the Federal Housing Authority road junction at Kubwa on May 2, 2002. Julius made a confessional statement in which he described how Haruna was killed.

He said the deceased was driving a Honda Car and was ordered to stop for checking at about 12:30am but failed to stop. He said he was infuriated by the attitude of the deceased following which he shot him to death with his A.K. 47 rifle.

The Judge said, "There is no better evidence to show who and what caused the death of Shagari Haruna. Exhibit A was admitted in evidence where he confessed that he killed Shagari. It was made voluntarily. And it has passed the admissibility test of evidence.

"Beside, it was the intention of the accused to kill the deceased." The court noted that a statement deposed to by the policeman in charge of Kubwa police station Mr. Baba Shehu partly corroborated what Julius stated in the court.

Shehu explained that the accused was posted to take charge of the A.P. Filling station situated directly opposite the Kubwa FHA road junction.

While he, Shehu was patrolling, he met Julius at the FHA road junction where he was not supposed to be and asked him to leave for his duty post.

Not quite some minutes after he drove away from that spot, he heard a gunshot which prompted him to return.

On getting to the scene of the incident, he inquired about the gun shot and none of the policemen said anything until Julius owned up to his action.

He explained that within the vicinity, the body of the deceased lying in a pool of his blood could be found.

Shehu said he asked Julius the reason for shooting the deceased but said it was because he ordered him to stop and refused.

This Day

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