Lekan Shonde to stand trial for wife’s murder – DPP

Lekan-and-Ronke1The Directorate of Public Prosecutions, Lagos State, has ordered that alleged wife killer, Lekan Shonde, be tried for murder.

The DPP, in its advice dated June 16, 2016 by the Chief State Counsel, Mr. T. Adewoye, stated that evidences available revealed that the dock worker killed his wife, Ronke.

Our correspondent had reported that 51-year-old Shonde allegedly killed his wife of eight years at their home in the Egbeda area of Lagos.

He was alleged to have locked the door on the corpse and their two children, before the incident was discovered by a housekeeper and later reported to the police.

The man, who surrendered himself to the police after days in hiding, claimed that he only slapped the deceased during a disagreement on the night of the incident.

An autopsy report on Ronke’s death had, however, revealed that she died from respiratory seizure before the Lagos State Police Command decided to arraign him for the crime.

On Friday, an Ebute Meta Chief Magistrate’s Court, said the legal advice was ready but the court adjourned till July 8 after the counsel to the defendant, I.B. Mohammed, said he had yet to get the advice.

The Chief Magistrate, O.I. Adelaja, advised the counsel to obtain the Certified True Copy before the adjourned date.

Saturday PUNCH, which exclusively obtained a copy of the advice, learnt that Shonde would be tried for murder.

The advice read in part, “From the facts in the case file, it is clear that the victim died. However, it cannot be established that an act of omission of the suspect caused the death.

“From the duplicate case file, there is no eyewitness account of the circumstances leading to the death of Ronke Shonde. The issue to be determined is whether or not the circumstantial evidence available in this case is strong enough to secure a conviction.”

The advice said since the suspect admitted to slapping his wife before her death, he was culpable.

“The suspect admitted that he slapped the deceased, which is in consonance with the autopsy report that the deceased had deep tissue-bruising of the cheeks. Though the suspect said there was an argument between them and the deceased held on to his shirt, he did not however express what led to the deceased holding on to his shirt and challenging him to a fight, neither did he state how he freed himself from the deceased.

“Secondly, there has been a history of violence against the deceased in the past, confirmed by the complainant/landlord and Bolatito Bewaji (sister). It was also stated that he would beat his wife, lock her inside and take her phone away to prevent her from getting help from neighbours. Same thing happened on May 5 and 6, 2016.

“Thirdly, the autopsy report states succinctly that the death of the deceased was not natural neither was it by a terminal disease but all the indices related the death to the possibility of a fight, leading to a brain injury and thus respiratory failure and ultimately leading to her death.”

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