Rivers State alleged serial killer, Gracious David-West, on Tuesday described himself as a child of God who does not tell lies.
WuzupNigeria reports that David-West is standing before Justice Adolphus Enebeli of the Rivers State High Court for allegedly murdering 10 ladies.
The case was adjourned on Monday over a lack of legal counsel to represent the suspect. However, at the resumed hearing on Tuesday Gracious David-West pleaded guilty to only nine murders. He vehemently denied killing one of his victims, saying he is “a child of God” and would not lie.
He told the court,
“I never had thoughts of killing the tenth person.
“I don’t lie. I’m a child of God, I only tied her on the chair in the hotel room and walked away.”
The tenth victim the suspect denied killing was simply identified as Etim.
David-West, who was arrested on September 19, said he gave the bound Etim a stern warning to desist from prostitution, and thereafter walked out of the hotel room.
He was arraigned on a 10-count of murder and attempted murder an offence punishable by death.
The court adopted accelerated hearing on the matter to ensure that judgement was pronounced as quickly as possible, especially as the accused person pleaded guilty.
Speaking to newsmen shortly after the sitting, police prosecuting counsel, Gladys Imegwu, said the state Ministry of Justice was directed to take over the prosecution.
Principal State Counsel from the Department of Public Prosecutions (DPP), state Ministry of Justice, Chidi Ekeh, said the move to take over the prosecution was to ensure that justice prevailed.
“We considered this case a very sensitive one that the state should not ignore, considering the fact that all the nine victims that were killed apart from the fact that they are in Rivers State, they also humans and the state has a responsibility to protect the citizens wherever they come from, so today the state is taking over the matter to assure the people that the state is protecting them.
“We will prosecute this matter to its logical conclusion and ensure that justice prevails at the end of the day.”
Counsel for the defendant, Vincent Chukwu told newsmen that his client pleading guilty before the court was not enough to convict him of the crime without due trial.
“The offence in question is a capital offence, whether my client did it or not, the presumption is that the prosecution must still prove their case beyond reasonable doubt, so it is not for the defendant to just say I am guilty and liable and it ends there.
“Because the punishment is death, so the burden is now on the prosecution to go ahead to prove their case and we are waiting for them. My client has a very plausible defence which we shall open up at the appropriate time, we have had fruitful deliberations with him yesterday and we hope for the best in the matter”.
Justice Enebeli ordered that the defendant be remanded in prison custody and adjourned the matter till November 18, 21, 27, 29 and 4 December 2019 for hearing.