The trial of Darambi Vandi, the alleged suspect in the killing of a Lagos-based lawyer who was shot dead on Christmas Day, continued recently, with the sixth prosecution witness, Insp. Sunday Akagu, telling the court what happened on that day.
Vandi is standing trial on one count charge of shooting and killing Mrs Omobolanle Raheem on December. 25, 2022, at Ajah, Lagos. He has however pleaded not guilty to the charge levelled against him by the Lagos State Government. The Prosecution led by the Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Moyo Onigbanjo (SAN), had disclosed that the offence contravened Section 223 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
While testifying before the trial judge, Justice Ibironke Harrison, during a Lagos High Court sitting at Tafawa Balewa Square recently, Akagu said the accused officer, ASP Vandi, requested that he give him one bullet to replace his own. The witness revealed that he had worked for 20 years as a police officer and was attached to the police station in Ajah.
Akagu explained how he was informed about the incident. He said after the station got the information, he was part of the officers that visited the hospital where the victim was taken to.
Also, Akagu told the court that his team was thereafter asked to convey the defendant back to the police station.
Akagun said: “On our way back to the police station, the defendant asked me to help him with one ammunition and I said no. I became angry and asked him why I should give him my ammunition. I then told our colleagues about the defendant’s request.”
The witness was later cross-examined by the defendant’s counsel, Mr Adetokunbo Odutola. While answering questions, the witness explained that he was not present when the defendant was disarmed and could not say the exact time or place the defendant was actually disarmed.
After Akagu’s evidence, the seventh witness, the Investigating Police Officer (IPO), Insp. Olagunju Olatunji, presented his own evidence.
Olatunji told the court that he was at the station at around 1:00 p.m., when Enema Titilayo (the deceased’s sister), ran to the station to report a case of conspiracy and shooting.
He said he was part of the team that drove to the three hospitals Raheem was taken to before her death.
He said: “We took her corpse to the Yaba Specialists Hospital and deposited her corpse.”
While talking about his encounter with the suspected killer, the IPO said he saw the defendant hiding under a staircase at the hospital.
The IPO said that while carrying out his investigation, he took the statement of the defendant and that of the complainant. According to him, both statements were taken with caution and voluntarily. The witness said that the case was later transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department, Yaba, for further investigation.
He said: “Before I transferred the case, I found out that the defendant fired his gun and at the same time his ammunition was not complete.”
Also, the witness was cross-examined by the defendant’s counsel and he narrated what he discovered during his investigation.
He narrated three instances which made him believe that the defendant was the person that shot the victim. He said that among the three officers who were on patrol together, only the defendant’s gun had a shortage of bullets.
After listening to the evidence presented by the witnesses, Justice Ibironke adjourned the matter till February 8.
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