Abia man to die by hanging for killing one-year old son in Enugu

Enugu State High Court has found a man, Okolie Chigozie Michael, 32, guilty of unlawfully killing his son. He committed the offence when he was 28 year-old in 2020.

Delivering her judgement on the matter on Wednesday, Hon. Justice C. C. Ani found the accused guilty of murder and sentenced him to death by hanging.

The court found him guilty after it was proved beyond reasonable doubt that the accused, Okolie Chigozie Michael, on April 14, 2020 at Emene in Enugu, took his son, Igwilo Chimereucheya, to the bush and strangled him.

Regrettably, when the child didn’t die, the convict hit him on chest, which resulted to the child passing out hot faeces and urine before giving up the ghost.

The convict was accused of using his fingers to scratch and inflicted bodily injury on his son, making it appear as if the child was involved in a fight, after which the convict took him home, cleaned him up and laid him on the bed, leaving him as though he was asleep and attempted to escape.

The mother of the 1 year and seven months old child raised the alarm and attracted neighbours when she noticed that the child was dead.

In itself judgment, the court agreed with the Prosecuting Counsel, Barr. Nkechi Ogbodo of the Department of Public Prosecution, Ministry of Justice, Enugu, who had during the trial tendered evidence before the court, including autopsy report to proved that indeed the deceased was strangled to death.

It was gathered that the convict is a serial abuser, who constantly beats up the mother of his son.

It was further gathered that he was earlier made to sign an undertaken at the police station at the insistence of their landlord and his wife’s employer, due to constant threats that he will kill both the mother and her child.

Consequently, he was cautioned at different police stations to desist from his violent acts before the incident that led to the death of his son, Chimereucheya, occurred.

It was reported that on certain occasion, the convict inflicted injury on the deceased’s penis because he urinated on the bed.

Justice Ani noted in her ruling that it was evident from the confession by the culprit on how he murdered the deceased showed that it was voluntary and premeditated act, not under duress.

Therefore, the court found him guilty of murder and sentenced him to death accordingly, haven committed the committed the offence punishable under Section 274(1) of the Criminal Code, Cap 30, Vol. II, Revised Laws of Enugu State of Nigeria 2004.

While Okolie Chigozie Michael, the defendant in the case, is a native of Ibeme Obingwa in Abia State, the mother of the child hails from Imezie Owa in Ezeagu Local Government Area of Enugu State.

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